From gross to glory.
A SXSW winner and Webby finalist, The Cycle earned something far greater than recognition: the pride of knowing less recyclables would find their way into landfills. Employing a non-linear narrative told through an animated online experience, the The Cycle guides users through the recycling process, from curb to shelf, at their own pace and depth-of-understanding.
It all starts in the hood
The story begins with a quick recap of recycling’s history, single-stream recycling and how it saves communities money while protecting the environment.
Second stop, the MRF
From the curbside, waste materials are transported to a Material Recovery Facility (MRF) where they are sorted by type and transported to their respective processors.
Paper that tells a better story
Inks are chemically erased, then the paper is reduced to a pulp mix, spun, dried and pressed into new products like insulation, office products—even toilet paper.
Heavy metal rocks the next generation
A smelter heats the metal into a molten liquid. It’s then pressed into metal bars and sent to manufacturers who make new products like jet engines, office supplies and soda cans.
Plastic’s second chance
Mechanically separated based on type of plastic, a grinder reduces the material to flakes which are cleaned and reformed into clothing, plastic lumber, new bottles and more.
Old glass, clearly repurposed
Smashed glass is either sent to manufacturers for immediate reuse or melted into a liquid and reformed into road-building glassphalt, remodeling tile and even glass sand, which guards against beach erosion.
Change in another country
Household recyclables don’t always stay in the US. In fact, a huge overseas market exists for raw recyclables, where foreign manufacturers use our recyclables to build new products for import.
With attention spans even smaller than the tiniest mobile device these days, multiplatform functionality allowed the user to take the Recyclebank story with them and literally interact with it anywhere they found the time.
A one-click copy/paste embed feature let users highlight the Recyclebank story in blog posts, message forums, emails and more. Even better, folks writing about Recyclebank in their own words acted as valid, third-part endorsers for the Recyclebank brand—editorial coverage that didn’t cost our client a penny.
Scaleable by design, topline users could watch the videos and gain a quick understanding of the single stream recycling process. Users with greater curiosity could learn more about the process by simply clicking a button, where they were given more information.
Knowing we all learn at our own pace, each segment of the story was produced in smaller, easily digestible morsels. That way, users could skip forward or re-watch any section at their convenience.
Pop-up windows helped to simplify the complex. For example, distinguishing between the seven classifications of recyclable plastics. Users only need one click to learn the difference between each of the seven, and with that, gain quick understanding of an oddly elaborate concept.
“Magic. We couldn’t have won at SXSW with any other team. Parliament was diligent, thoughtful, creative, and innovative.”
Monique Hartl, Director of Marketing