The Currency of Trust

5 Steps Financial Services Brands Should Take to Build Trust

July 19, 2017

Trust webinar

As marketers, we are aware that we live and operate in a ‘post-trust’ world. Following the global financial crisis, the Trust Agenda matters now, more than ever, in rebuilding financial services brands.

Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, said recently that “trust arrives by foot and leaves by Ferrari.” This brought home to me just how crucial the agenda is and how integral it must be to our roles as financial services marketers.

Trust isn’t new in finance and has been a long-standing issue. Indeed, the Latin root of the word credit is ‘credo’ or “I believe”. This means a bank note is little more than a promise.

But, there has been no significant reset in the low levels of trust in financial services institutions since the last financial crisis. We have witnessed this in Edelman’s trust barometer, which has ranked financial services consistently as one of the least trusted sectors for the last 17 years of the survey.1

And today, a new generation of FinTech challengers are quick to acclaim the ‘ethical bankruptcy’ of the incumbent institutions they seek to disrupt. However, we have to remember that they are not immune to trust issues themselves.

The growing storm of trust

Financial marketers now face added complexities in dealing with trust.

Media trust

They have to navigate a ‘post-truth’ media and news environment. Consumers, feeling bombarded and duped by ‘fake news’, are not sure who to turn to. Since a fractious roster of global elections and referenda, trust in the mainstream media has fallen to a 17-year low as cited by Edelman. Interestingly, for the first time research showed ‘a person like myself’ is now as credible a source of information as ‘an expert voice’.

Advertising trust

On the other side of the fence marketers also have to wrestle with issues of trust in advertising and media. This can start with a debate on brand safety. A key example was when Chase took the decision, as part of a brand safety audit, to cull programmatic spend from long-tail and focus on more targeted spend. Ad Age asks ‘is this a revolution in digital advertising?’2

Adding value through the ‘currency of trust’

Into this maelstrom, we are launching our ‘currency of trust’ campaign to provide some practical steps to help the global financial services marketing community triangulate their trust decisions.

Partly, we are playing on our long-held values as a platform. Much of this is down to the mindsets with which consumers approach different platforms. Our professional members approach LinkedIn to inform and progress their careers and know it is a less risky environment in which to post. Research by Business Insider Intelligence voted LinkedIn ‘by far the most trusted platform’ which is an accolade we are very proud of. They also found LinkedIn to be a more brand-safe platform with 95% of sessions from logged-in members and viewability 2x the industry average.3

But we’re also sharing our experiences with over 3,000 global financial brands as they’ve weathered financial and reputational storms. By demonstrating transparency and authority, brands can differentiate themselves from the rest of the market. Over the coming months we will be sharing insights and guidance around the 5 key pillars we see as crucial to cementing those bonds of trust with your customers:

  1. Add value at the moments that matter
  2. Communicate with a human voice
  3. Be part of the community
  4. Be present, be constant
  5. Think context as well as content

To continue this discussion, we are bringing together a panel of respected opinion leaders from all corners of the debate. Register today for our webinar The Currency of Trust: How marketers should bridge the trust divide in financial services, media and marketing at 11.00am ET/8.00am PT on Thursday, July 27th, 2017.



3 Business Insider Intelligence ‘Digital Trust Report’, June 2017