How to design a poster to encourage recycling

Updated March 23, 2017

About a quarter of Americans don't recycle according to a Harris Poll. Common reasons include ignorance of the importance of recycling for environmental reasons and laziness. Some people don't like to collect cans and bottles because they dislike clutter. You can help reduce the number of people in your town who don't recycle by designing a poster that will encourage them with information and advice.

Design your poster using a standard graphic layout program like Microsoft Word, Microsoft Publisher, or Adobe InDesign. If you use a Microsoft Office program, you can download a poster template from the Office online website (see "Resources" for direct link). Create a flyer sized at 11-by-17 inches or larger.

Create an eye-catching yet serious headline for the recycling poster that will shock yet draw the interest of readers. For instance, "Where Will That Juice Bottle You Just Tossed Be in 100 Years? Still Here." Make the font large (at least 20 points).

Provide important statistics related to recycling common items under the poster headline in bullet-point format. For instance, give the number of years it takes for an aluminium soda can to biodegrade in a landfill (approximately 500 years). List references (website addresses) at the bottom of the poster to back up your statistics.

Insert a picture of each of the common recyclable items in the middle of the poster. That includes, paper, plastic bottles, soda cans, and glass.

List tips that will make recycling easier for a homeowner at the bottom of the poster. For example, some towns provide attractive recycling containers for free and convenient kerbside pickup for recyclable items. Provide tips for where a homeowner can store the containers if she's concerned about clutter.

Give the reader a listing of all the local recycling or redemption centres in the area if there's room at the bottom. Make it easy for the viewer to take action starting today. Insert a website address or hotline where the reader can visit or call for more information about recycling at the bottom as well.

Print the poster in full colour on glossy stock paper or send it to a professional copy shop for production.


Insert a clip-art picture of the earth somewhere on the flyer if you have space to remind the reader of the main reason why recycling is important.

Things You'll Need

  • Layout program
  • Clip-art images or photos
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About the Author

Louise Balle has been writing Web articles since 2004, covering everything from business promotion to topics on beauty. Her work can be found on various websites. She has a small-business background and experience as a layout and graphics designer for Web and book projects.