Social Media helps Rubbermaid to reposition the brand around the organization lifestyle

Kelly    March 7, 2012

Organization Name: Newell Rubbermaid  (Rubbermaid Brand)

Industry: Retail

Web references:

Description of how social media is used for business performance

Newell Rubbermaid has a vast portfolio of more than 30 brands, but the Rubbermaid containers brand has made an especially strong impact through social media over the past three years.  The Rubbermaid brand was Newell Rubbermaids second brand to enter the social media ecosystem.  The team’s goal was to reposition the brand around the organization lifestyle. Prior to launching social media efforts, Rubbermaid had excellent brand awareness, but it was awareness around two product lines: trash cans and storage totes. Rubbermaid’s product offering is actually much more diverse, including innovative organization systems for the garage, kitchen, bathroom, closet and storage areas of the house. These were the products the brand wanted to highlight.

Rubbermaid launched a blog called “Adventures in Organization” ( in February of 2008, focusing on the organized home.  In addition to the blog, they launched a Rubbermaid Twitter ID ( and later launched Rubbermaid pages on Facebook and YouTube ( and

Rubbermaid also integrated consumer generated product reviews on the website and now has more than 5,000 reviews on the site.  This was done in partnership with BazaarVoice, and the brand has seen a positive ROI for consumer generated product reviews when used as part of a coupon program.

The Rubbermaid efforts resonated with members of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), as it showed their brand cared about what was important to them. As a result, the brand has developed a long-term relationship with NAPO members that has flourished. The brand’s social media sites now include guest posts by NAPO members and a variety of sample and giveaway programs.

Lessons for others

Rubbermaid has carved out a vibrant online community, and uses the Internet and social media to help build its revenue and its brand by listening to its commenters, soliciting ratings and reviews from consumers on particular products, and consistently driving Facebook visitors back to the Rubbermaid Web site with various teasers and prompts.

Submitted By: Kelly Ballinger, University of Waterloo

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