The recycling industry has seen immense growth over the past fifty years. That’s in part because, according to the EPA, the U.S. recycles over 35% of its total municipal solid waste annually. That’s up from under 10% before 1990.
This recycling boom has led to the rise of a number of smaller recycling companies from industrial recyclers to electronic recyclers.
All of the competition means recycling businesses need to have innovative marketing plans to stand out from the crowd. Here are six recycling marketing ideas to help your business do just that.
- Engage and inform customers on social media.
- Get published in local newspapers, industry publications, and more.
- Improve your website’s visibility on search engines.
- Create and maintain a Google My Business profile.
- Use industry directories to enhance local SEO.
- Create and blog to inform current clients and attract new ones.
- Reduce paid advertising costs with digital marketing services.
Social media isn’t always the right tactic for recycling companies. It takes time, consistent effort, and a lot of research. And recycling company social media pages on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Linkedin, aren’t always going to get a lot of traffic.
Still, social media can bring a lot of value to recycling companies. It’s one of the best ways to inform customers of new offerings, referral promotions, or interruptions in services.
Companies, like Waste Management (WM), who have struggled to find a way to connect with customers through traditional Facebook and Instagram channels have decided to put more effort into Youtube. In fact, the WM Youtube page now has more than 10,000 subscribers. Sometimes taking a less traditional social media approach and using video marketing can be a gamechanger.
Conventional social media channels remain a necessity but don’t take our word for it.
John Paglia III, a 4th generation garbage man, explains how social media helped his business build brand awareness, customer loyalty, and keep customers informed of service interruptions after Hurricane Irma:
“We recently just went through Hurricane Irma, which gave us little ways to reach out to customers due to lack of power, internet at times, radio, etc. We used our Facebook page as one way to reach out to customers to make them aware of our delayed schedule. It was very successful in relaying messages about service.”
Social media helps build trust with customers, especially in hard times. Here’s a look at Paglia’s company Facebook page that helped his business get through Hurricane Irma.
Did you know some 90.4% of Millennials, 77.5% of Generation X and 48.2% of Baby Boomers actively use social media, according to data from Emarketer.com? That includes business owners and potential clients for your recycling business.
If you want to reach those customers, you need to be as active on social media. One great way to do that is by using hashtag research to discover and connect with the right audience.
Remember your #hashtags
Hashtag research is a great way to get your Twitter or Instagram off the ground. The hashtag, also known as the pound symbol (#), first came to prominence in 2007 when Twitter started using them to organize topics and connect people with similar interests.
Today, hashtags have made their way onto every major platform, from Instagram to Pinterest, which presents an opportunity for businesses.
Hashtags are a great way to connect with potential clients and find topics that are trending. Here’s another example from Waste Management.
Here they use hashtags like #sustainable and #internationalwomensday to celebrate their employees and build trust with customers through consistent engagement on social media.
Some other common recycling industry hashtags include the following and more:
Local newspapers and industry associations, both online and offline, are often looking for quality content from industry experts or community pillars to feature in their publications.
Try reaching out to these businesses to see if they will publish an informative piece about your recycling company, the industry, or any other topics.
Remember, this isn’t an advertisement. The goal is to share valuable information with the readers of the publications, while also establishing yourself as an industry authority.
Publishing online is great for building brand awareness and reputation, but digital publishing has another benefit. You can get an inbound link back to your website.
These inbound links help improve your website’s position in search engine results pages (SERPs), which is extremely important to your recycling business’ marketing plan’s ROI.
Securing links and building brand awareness through publishing, both offline and online, is considered the main tactic of digital PR.
Where do you go to find recycling services in 2020?
The internet, of course. And, in particular, Google. The fact is some 93% of global search traffic comes from Google Search, Google Images, and Google Maps alone, according to data from Sparktoro.
That means Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) have become extremely important for businesses, but showing up in SERPs isn’t enough.
According to Zero Limit Web, the first five organic results in Google’s SERPs account for 67.6% of all clicks.
That’s where SEO for recycling companies can help. SEO will improve your website’s visibility in search engines. That moves you up SERPs, which means more organic traffic and more connections with companies that need specialized recycling solutions.
Common SEO tactics to help recycling companies improve their inbound leads include, but are not limited to:
- Content marketing to bring in organic traffic and improve your website’s position on search engine results pages.
- User experience enhancements and conversion optimization to convert website visitors into clients.
- Building your backlink profile with relevant, authoritative links from partner sites.
- Site speed enhancements and mobile optimization to keep customers on the page no matter where they are.
One of the best, and easiest, ways to get your marketing plan for a recycling business going is by creating and maintaining a Google My Business profile.
Google My Business (GMB) profiles were created by Google to help customers find local businesses easier.
Securing your GMB profile is the only way your company will be featured on Google Maps for important keywords. Let’s look at “industrial companies phoenix,” for example.
The GMB profile of our client, Generated Materials Recovery, is featured prominently in the results. In addition, they get a citation—citations are online references to your business.
These citations usually include your business’ name, address, phone number, (NAP) and sometimes a link. Citations help improve your company’s visibility online—and that means more inbound leads.
Plus, with GMB profiles, you’ll receive a local listing on search engine results pages (SERPs) when a client searches for your business. It’s a great way to make your company look more professional.
GMB profiles are the perfect way to begin a marketing campaign for your business.
They’re easy to create and are a huge part of local SEO.
Wait, what’s local SEO?
It’s the process of increasing a business’s visibility for local searches and on Google Maps. If you want to bring in more leads from local searches, you’ll need local SEO. And that all starts with a GMB profile.
Directories are another great place to get started with local SEO. Citations in local directories help build your company’s visibility and bring in leads.
Usually, you’ll start by securing citations in general directories. These include options like:
Then, there are more specific industry directories. These are great spots to secure a citation that includes not only NAP matching what’s on your Google My Business profile, but also a link back to your site.
Links boost domain authority. The better your domain authority, the better your position on search engine results pages.
Here’s an example citation from the recycling industry directory ScrapMonster that has over 70,000 recycling, scrap, and garbage businesses listed.
Although recycling business blogs aren’t likely to attract tons of organic traffic, they are still valuable for marketing. Blogs are the perfect way to educate your clients about FAQs.
Here’s an example from Casella Waste Systems, a regional waste services, and recycling company.
Here they answer a common question they get about competitors’ ‘zero waste” policies.
You can see how having a blog like this would bring a lot of value for your sales team, social media posts, and client education.
No matter the company size, content marketing is a great idea for recycling businesses. Here’s an example blog from our client, Generated Materials Recovery, that helps explain to customers the ins and out of corrugated cardboard recycling.
You might gawk at a blog like this thinking, it wouldn’t help your business, but the number one rule of business is to always listen to your customers.
Here’s one of those customers, Amanda Jones, a corporate responsibility officer at The Essay Typer, and a recycling customer, said in a quote for WasteAdvantageMag:
“As we looked for local recycling options, we were a bit disappointed that we had to dig for information that we needed from our waste management provider. Everything seemed to be one size fits all. As consumers, it would have been better to access useful information based on our customer history, business size, and needs.”
The best place to provide the kind of in-depth information that potential recycling customers need to make a decision is a blog.
Paid advertising can be costly, but it is effective. Still, not every business can afford that type of constant expense.
If that’s the case, the six recycling marketing ideas in this article help you get started with a new marketing strategy or improve your old one. If you’re still worried about being able to do all the work involved in marketing your recycling business—you can always reach out to the experts.
Digital marketing services can help turn your business around or keep things on track. To find out more, feel free to contact us and we can get you started on your journey in recycling and industrial SEO.
Markitors is a digital marketing agency specializing in SEO. We help small businesses rank higher on Google to get more traffic to their websites and increase revenue. Explore what’s in our SEO toolbox: audits and keyword research, digital PR, technical SEO, and local SEO.