Recap and Replay: Edelman’s “Post-Covid Trust” Research and Panel


On April 15, the FCS and Edelman staged a CMO panel discussion, “Building Trust in Financial Services Post-Covid,” based on the financial services industry results of the 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer. Deidre Campbell, Edelman's U.S. Chair, Financial Services led a panel discussion with Jennifer Mathissen, Chief Marketing Officer, Santander U.S., Emily Pachuta, Chief Marketing & Analytics Officer – Americas, Invesco, and Beth Wood, SVP and Chief Marketing Officer, Principal Financial Group. A recording of the event can be found here.

The panelists discussed steps they’ve taken to help their customers throughout the pandemic – from waiving overdraft fees and increasing credit card limits to setting up vaccine clinics and buying/distributing meals to those most in need. When talking about trust, panelists discussed the importance of starting with employees and treating people with respect – and how “trust starts from the inside out.” Each panelist discussed the importance of staying true to their purpose as a company.

Below are additional topics the group touched on during the hour-long discussion:

  • Small Businesses: Importance of supporting diverse businesses that were impacted the most through the pandemic, by helping them understand PPP and then continuing to meet their needs as they re-enter the market.
  • ESG: The level of ESG maturity in different markets around the world and then how ESG filters the investment process, the benefit of expressing your own values through investment vehicles and also the corporate responsibility aspect to it. Also discussed: the roles these companies play in providing access to financial security and helping consumers understand the language spoken in the financial services industry.
  • Digital Marketing: The importance of digital marketing as part of their integrated strategy and the investments companies are making as a result while other vehicles like direct mail and TV continue to perform well. The CMOs also discussed the steps they are taking to unlock some of the barriers with their organizations so that they can more fully embrace digital tools and approaches.
  • Industry Transformation: The changes within the financial services industry and how consumers don’t want people pushing products at them and instead, want a conversation and more importantly, relationships. As one panelist shared, customers want to  “know more about who we are” than what we sell.