Co-written by Risa Klein

Successful companies are focusing on more than their product features and price to position their brand favorably among a new generation of socially-conscious buyers.

As social gurus, millennials’ purchasing decisions are driven by personal brand because they want the brands they buy from to align with their values and morals. According to a recent survey, individuals, especially millennials, have a greater interest in working for, buying from and investing in companies that have a core value of social responsibility. Additionally, millennials are willing to pay more while accepting less if it means buying from or working for a socially responsible company. Ninety-two percent of those surveyed agreed with the statement, “I care more about having a positive impact on society than doing well financially.”

As millennials enter the workforce they are influencing the future of philanthropy — and are backing companies that are willing to do the same. Click To Tweet

Love Your Melon

Cancer affects so many individuals and families, with over 15,000 children diagnosed every year. Love Your Melon has taken pediatric cancer and formed an apparel business that gives back.

Love Your Melon was developed by two University of St. Thomas students who made it their mission to improve the lives of children battling cancer. The company has given more than 144,000 hats and 4.6 million dollars to fight pediatric cancer. Love Your Melon now donates 50 percent of all its profits to nonprofit partners that fund cancer research, provide support for families of children battling cancer and professionals who work in pediatric oncology.

The company has a large presence on many college campuses, with students rallying around the cause as brand ambassadors. Having that direct connection to students spreads awareness organically and creates customers for years to come.

What started as two millennial entrepreneurs brainstorming an idea for their class project transformed into a philanthropic effort that funds research to save lives. To read more about their efforts and how they give back to the community, visit their blog.

Warby Parker

Sometimes, seemingly simple problems are hard to see, especially for the 2.5 billion people around the world who need eyeglasses. The inability to see costs the global economy nearly $200 billion annually to lost productivity, according to the World Health Organization. Just one pair of glasses can increase productivity by 35 percent in the developing world.

Warby Parker is an eyewear company that is trying to help those who cannot see through their Buy a Pair, Give a Pair program. This initiative has donated more than four million pairs of glasses to more than 50 countries across the globe.

Giving glasses and vision care to school-age children is just one of Warby Parker’s models of philanthropy. The company’s additional philanthropic efforts train men and women to administer basic eye care exams and sell affordable glasses in low-income areas and developing countries.

To reach these socially-conscious millennials, companies must think of different ways they can align their organization with philanthropic efforts that not only make the world a better place, but also fit their brand.

These companies have found a unique way to give back and millennials see the value in their brand’s authenticity.

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