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How to Create a Giveback Program Without Breaking the Bank Doing good is good for business. Here are the steps to make social consciousness part of your company.

By Michelle Goodman

This story appears in the February 2016 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Chris Delorenzo
Moving story: Evan (left) and Aaron (right) Steed of Meathead Movers.

Aaron and Evan Steed were busy high school athletes looking for a job that wouldn't interfere with their practice schedule. They found it in 1997 when a family friend needed help moving and offered $20 and a pizza. The brothers enjoyed the work and wanted more, so they dubbed themselves Meathead Movers and blanketed the neighborhood with flyers; their high school's pay phone became their office line.

The first inquiries came from family friends and neighbors. Then strangers. And then, the unexpected: domestic violence victims, both women and men, who had little money but needed to quickly flee a dangerous situation. As more victims called, the Steed brothers realized they'd found a logical cause: moving these people for free. "It was pretty obvious that this was an important thing for us to do," says Aaron Steed, CEO. "I can't think of a more impactful way for a moving company to utilize their services. You're potentially saving a life every time you do it."

By finding a way to help their community, Meathead Movers joined a growing movement of entrepreneurs who make philanthropy a part of their operations. It's good citizenship, but it's also good business: 64 percent of customers prefer to buy from socially responsible companies, reports a study conducted last year by Good.Must.Grow., a Nashville-based marketing agency for socially conscious businesses. And it isn't overly complex or challenging to create a program -- all you need is the right intentions and helpful partners.

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