When you started your business, what were your initial goals? Perhaps you wanted to begin a legacy for your family, or maybe you just wanted to see if your hobby could bring in an extra few bucks each month. No matter why you started your company, when you did, you also started your brand.

The word “brand” gets tossed around in business networking classes and circles a lot lately. However, most people don’t realize that a company brand goes far beyond logo design or color choice. The introduction of social media as a viable part of a company marketing plan got most business owners looking to extend the company brand to Facebook posts, Instagram Lives, and more.

When is the last time that you thought about your company brand or personality? Are you a laid-back brand with roots in giving back to the local community? Perhaps you are a friendly and playful brand that values diversity. If you haven’t nailed down your company brand in the past year, it’s time to schedule a series of meetings with your team to get it done. Once you have your brand, you can use it as a guide for your social media posts, your marketing plans, and your business goals.

One aspect of a brand that is important to consider is social responsibility. Businesses of all sizes and in all industries are making the transition to using their influence to make the world a better place. Some companies give a set percentage of profits to local schools, while others use sustainably sourced materials. You may not have a foundation in social responsibility for your business, but customers are paying attention. More and more research is demonstrating that Millennials, as well as those in Gen X, are giving their money to businesses that support common causes.

What does social responsibility look like for your business and for your brand? Take time to thoughtfully consider this question with your team, and act accordingly. You may be surprised at how it can increase sales and customer relationships, as well as make you feel great.

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