4 easy marketing tips for scrap plastic trading firms
Being in the scrap plastic trading industry ultimately means that we are in the sales and marketing business. Every successful scrap plastic trade is based on trust, expertise, and time-sensitive details. Since our industry is a commodity industry where price is always of the essence, scrap plastic traders don’t always think of themselves as having a “brand” and a marketable reputation. But the truth is, if you’re in this business, you might not realize it, but marketing needs to be one of your #1 priorities.
Here are a few tips for how scrap plastic trading firms can do better marketing:
Build a trustworthy website: It’s amazing to me how many companies in the scrap plastic trading business still have less-than-impressive websites. By this I mean, you don’t necessarily need to have a website with a lot of expensive bells and whistles, but your website needs to convey credibility. For example, some scrap plastic traders are still using old-fashioned methods of website design – the websites look ugly or poorly maintained, like no one has updated the site in 2 years. Or the scrap plastic trading company website might look slapdash and haphazard, like it’s a fly-by-night organization. You want your company website to look as if people actually work at your company and buy scrap plastic from you. As part of your website, you need a blog. That’s why we invest time and effort in creating these blog articles for the BlackBridge Investments blog – we want to show our buyers and vendor partners that we are actively doing business, we have a lasting presence online, and we are here to stay.
Create valuable content: Once you set up a blog, you need to make sure you have something to say. Do you feel like you’re not a natural “writer?” No problem – just think about some of the big trends that are affecting your business, and comment on them. Share articles that other people have written, and add your own ideas and insights and commentary. Do you agree with the big industry trade journals’ descriptions of where our industry is headed? Where do you disagree? What are you seeing in your market that gives you optimism, or how are you doing things differently to adjust to a challenging situation? There is an infinite variety of things to write about on your scrap plastic industry blog. You don’t have to be limited to the written word, either. You can also easily create YouTube videos and podcasts where you conduct interviews with people at your company, people in other areas of the scrap plastic industry, or other industry experts who might like to help weigh in on some of the latest trends and issues. Are you worried about disclosing confidential information or trade secrets? That’s fine – but you don’t have to reveal more than you want to. Just focus your blog on offering helpful advice, creating conversations with other industry peers and experts, and otherwise answering the types of questions that your customers are already asking.
Don’t overwhelm people: One of the biggest mistakes that scrap plastic trading companies make with their online marketing is that they bombard people with too many marketing messages, too often, too intensely, with too much of an emphasis on a “hard sell” approach. We’ve all seen how much clutter is clogging up the Internet – try not to add to it by (unintentionally) spamming people with too many messages or not enough sincerity. For example, we send an e-mail newsletter once a month (or sometimes less often). We update our blog once a week. We use LinkedIn and Twitter for lead generation and brand-building on social media, but we’re not constantly online, bombarding people with promotional messages.
Build relationships first – then sell: Time and again, we’ve realized that the scrap plastic trading industry is all about trust and personal relationships. If people trust you and like you and know you, they are going to want to do business with you. Building trust and creating a relationship can be a high bar to clear, but once you have a solid relationship with a vendor or buyer, it pays to keep maintaining that relationship for the long term. All of your marketing should be focused on building relationships – before you send an e-mail newsletter or update your website with a new blog article, ask yourself, “How is this helpful to my customers?” Ultimately, in spite of all the technology that we have today to communicate online and find information about companies with search engines, most scrap plastic business deals are based on a simple element of human trust.
What are some great marketing ideas that you’ve seen from other scrap plastic trading companies? Why did these messages make you feel more likely to trust those companies? Leave us a comment and let us know!