YMC TALKS: Enhancing Engagement with Content Marketing


On November 1, the FCS Young Members Circle (YMC) hosted another edition of its virtual Talks series with a panel of content marketing veterans. Moderator Tim Rickards, Director of Social and Content Strategy at Hearsay, was joined by Elizabeth Coleman-Chen, Head of Strategic Content Marketing at Morgan Stanley Investment Management, Michael Gannon, Head of Enterprise Marketing at Equitable, and Petra Hailu, Senior Content Marketing Consultant at LinkedIn. [See photo at bottom of page.]

The panel focused around an important question: How can brands remain relevant and informative to their audiences over time? “It’s a long game,” said Mike. Elizabeth noted that studies used to say that marketers would need to repeat something three times for the message to be remembered or make an impression. “Studies now show it’s 7-10 times, she highlighted. Customers have shortening attention spans – derivative content that is smart, interesting, engaging, and repeats messaging without feeling duplicative are critical to building familiarity and loyalty.

The panel stressed the importance of not getting too bogged down on leads and demand generation in a content marketing strategy. Both brand and demand focused content play a role in delivering success.

In her role at LinkedIn, Petra advises clients in the financial and technology verticals on how to strategize their content marketing efforts on the LinkedIn platform. According to Petra, content is fundamental to helping brands increase mental availability in the B2B financial space. “Building mental availability, making a brand known and top of mind in buying situations, can help translate to a higher share of sales,” she said. “In the B2B space, only 5% of buyers are in market, and the other 95% are out of market. You don’t want to lose the ability to have top of mind awareness when that 95% are considering a purchase. Brands with a higher mental availability have a higher share of mind, and that can translate to a higher share of sales over the long term.”

The goal of content marketing is to start a conversation and keep that conversation going,” added Mike. He expanded on a recent campaign Equitable launched to help build brand awareness. They worked with a documentary filmmaker to profile their advisors in three cities across the U.S. “It was detailed storytelling that was visual, emotional, and human. It also helped rally the internal organization around our brand mission.” The panel agreed that emotive, human content is key to engaging their audience and is where they’ve seen top performance. According to Petra, the content that has performed best on LinkedIn is human, emotional, and has personality.

As marketers, ensuring we put the customer first and imagine ourselves in their shoes is crucial to our success. “The best outcomes are born out of a group of diverse voices, and the same goes for content,” Elizabeth explained. “People digest content in four ways: words, numbers, visuals, and by having their emotions stirred. The best content broadcasts across all of those channels to ensure you are being inclusive of your entire audience and how they are looking to consume content.” At Equitable, Mike also ensures the firm’s content strategy focuses on the customer’s journey. We look at where our clients are in their life stage and wealth stage, then think about content in that context to ensure we are pairing the most relevant content with our clients.”

So what’s top of mind for content marketers in 2023? To sum it up, our panel revealed five important themes and insights:

  1. Human and emotive content will continue to be relevant and perform in turbulent market environments, especially when communicating complex topics.
  2. Bite-size, short-form, and consistent messages will help brands build brand distinction in a crowded space in a universe of short attention spans.
  3. Companies need to embrace faster, more authentic content in the social space to be timely and build a strong reputation with the next generation.
  4. Brand and demand both have an important role to play within the content marketing ecosystem.
  5. Relevancy is key – whether it’s understanding where your customer is in their journey, or testing localization tactics through ensuring your content is tailored to audiences in specific markets.

Our thanks to our panelists and the event sponsors: Hearsay Systems and Realtor.com.

Original Description

On Tuesday, November 1, the FCS Young Members Circle (YMC) will host a free virtual panel discussion on “Enhancing Engagement with Content Marketing” in partnership with Hearsay.

Branded content marketing remains an impactful way for financial marketers to build trust, develop relationships, improve conversions, and generate leads for their organizations.

Yet, with the increasingly diverse platforms and technologies available, how can marketers be sure that they are making the best use of these new opportunities and platforms to ensure they are effectively reaching their target audience? How will the rise of AI-generated content tools alter and influence the world of content?  How can brands best assimilate their content into the metaverse?

We invite you to join us to learn from our panel how brands can embrace the future of content marketing to create more authentic and meaningful relationships with their target audiences. Our panelists include:

  • Elizabeth Coleman-Chen, Head of Strategic Content Marketing, Morgan Stanley Investment Management
  • Michael Gannon, Head of Enterprise Marketing and Customer Experience, Equitable
  • Petra Hailu, Senior Content Marketing Consultant, LinkedIn Marketing Solutions

The panel will be moderated by Tim Rickards, Director of Social and Content Strategy, Hearsay Systems.

  • Start November 1, 2022 12:00 PM EDT
  • End November 1, 2022 12:45 PM EDT
  • Location Zoom


Panelist Elizabeth Coleman-Chen

Head of Strategic Content Marketing, Morgan Stanley Investment Management

Elizabeth is Executive Director, Head of Alternatives and Sustainability Content Marketing. She joined Morgan Stanley Investment Management in 2016 and has over 2o years of industry experience. Prior to joining the firm, Elizabeth was a Director of Alternatives Product Management at AllianceBernstein. Previously, she worked at Blackstone as Head of Client Service for the hedge […]

Panelist Michael Gannon

Head of Enterprise Marketing and Customer Experience

Michael Gannon is Head of Enterprise Marketing and Customer Experience at Equitable, where he oversees brand strategy and advertising, customer experience, digital strategy and channel management, and content marketing.

Panelist Petra Hailu

Senior Content Marketing Consultant

Petra Hailu is a Senior Content Marketing Consultant for LinkedIn Marketing Solutions, which she joined in 2021.

Moderator Tim Rickards

Director of Social and Content Strategy

Tim leads Hearsay’s Content Strategy team, which helps customers identify and tackle pain points, capture opportunities and achieve better business results from their Hearsay Social investments. Before joining Hearsay, Tim and his team led activation and engagement efforts for self-directed investing clients at Charles Schwab. During his time there, he also led Trading Services client […]