People, stories, data, and delight – with Gina Balarin

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About this episode

Gina Balarin – content marketer by profession, story-teller by passion – helps organisations tell their customers’ stories better. Stories transcend channels and departments by addressing the overall brand/customer relationship.  And customers can’t tell good stories if they haven’t had good experiences across all stages of the customer lifecycle and across all channels. So, who could be a better interviewee for the Omnichannel Podcast?

In this episode, Gina talks us through improving our use of Personas for better UX, and how she brings authentic, human, and engaging customer stories to the sometimes nebulous or dry world of B2B (primarily software) marketing. Gina has worked as a content marketer and marketing director, so she knows the struggles of making digital products tangible and real.

Omnichannel is the only way

For great customer experiences to happen – and then be effectively and efficiently shared back into the market – many roles all need to come together and work effectively across the entire customer lifecycle. That means aligning support and service, user experience, sales, training, fulfilment, marketers, and everyone else who communicates with or engages with the customer both pre- and post-sale.

Personas for everyone!

Gina also talks us through some points from her book The Secret Army and her excellent article on the CMI blog, ‘How to Stop Creating Content That Disappoints Your Audience‘. In these, she discusses how often the personas we use are inadequate and superficial. We’re focusing on demographic details – age, gender, location, education – but is that really what drives your persona?

Blindspots and insights in our data

Are you data-driven or data-informed? Gina’s worked both with great and poor data and tells us how to get the balance right between real customer research vs aggregate analytics data in a multi-disciplinary team.

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About Gina Balarin

Gina Balarin is a passionate corporate storyteller with over 15 years’ marketing and leadership experience. She is a marketing consultant, working primarily with B2B technology companies. Previously, Gina has worked as a content marketer and a Marketing Director. She is the author of hundreds of blog posts and too many B2B case studies to count. She speaks regularly on panel discussions and at marketing conferences and counts herself lucky to have spoken at TEDx. She blames her success on having been on stage in various guises over the years, doing everything from being a magician’s assistant and performing lead roles in ballet and drama productions, to having worked with top C-level executives and entrepreneurs. She has a Master’s Degree in Education in the subject of Management Communication, is a Chartered Marketer and Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, has a BA (Hons) in Linguistics and English Language, and a BA in Drama and Linguistics.