The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio educates the community and empowers businesses to turn waste into resources.

The ask was simple: we want more people to recycle, and recycle correctly, by launching a new marketing campaign. To develop impactful messaging, it was important to understand current behaviors around recycling. Partnering with a local community, we sent a survey to understand resident perceptions.

4 of 5 people view recycling as beneficial on the whole…

“Recycling is necessary and not being done enough.”

“I feel like I’m making a difference in the world.”

…but also said it’s too confusing, too much work, and all for naught.

“It’s a noble effort, but probably harder and
more complicated than it should be.”

“Recycling is more of an annoyance than anything.”

“It makes me feel accomplished, but sometimes weary.”

So, how can recycling be approachable?

Encouraging residents to recycle more, but also to recycle right, required addressing their confusion head-on.

The developed campaign name and mark speaks directly to the objectives: Recycle Right. Make a Difference.

Send it in pieces.

Our campaign strategy favored clear, digestible content by placing equal weight on accepted and non-accepted materials. The collateral ranged from a fridge magnet that’s always in plain sight to a large mailer featuring frequently debated materials, like pizza boxes. For direct feedback, we designed friendly ‘Oops’ cards for curbside auditing.

The campaign reached 54% of households in the surveyed city, mostly from the fridge magnet.

33% of residents reported referencing the magnet to answer their recycling questions.

19% reported recycling more frequently after seeing the campaign.

Most impressively, there was a 15-35% decline in respondents recycling unaccepted materials, like yogurt containers, take out boxes, and plastic bags.

This successful campaign gave SWACO the educational platform they needed.

What we delivered to SWACO

Brand Identity System

Marketing Campaign

Messaging Strategy

Print Design

Brand Launch

Campaign Validation