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3 Ways Millennials Are Leveraging Social Influence for Social Good How you can use your platform to make a difference.

By Jonathan Long

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Tim Robberts | Getty Images

One of the most talked about marketing trends over the past few years has been influencer marketing, and rightfully so, as it provides brands with an incredible opportunity to be seen by extremely engaged audiences.

The majority of buzz surrounding influencers is the money they are able to make from sponsored posts and brand endorsements. It's a very lucrative time to be an influencer with a large, engaged following -- I speak with brands of all sizes daily through my agency that aren't even sure what influencer marketing even entails -- they just think they need to jump on the train.

While many are leveraging their social influence to land big paychecks, many millennials are focused on leveraging their influencer for social good -- the media just doesn't like to focus on it. A story about a social influencer being paid six-figues for a single post is going to pull more attention, clicks and social shares than one about social good -- like The Santa Clause Affect -- but these stories do exist.

Related: 10 Laws of Social Media Marketing

1. Providing valuable education and knowledge.

There are so many benefits of building a personal brand, and the recent surge of social media stars is a prime example of how powerful your own brand can become. There are some social media influencers who have larger followings than some of the most popular actors and entertainers in the world.

Social media provides the perfect platform to establish, grow and then leverage a personal brand. Millennial initiatives like The Santa Clause Affect, are providing education, based on knowledge of the social media ecosystem. Understanding how to create content and build a following can be used for more than just become a social media superstar -- it can lead to successful career opportunities in virtually any industry or setting. They are teaching a skillset that can be used for enormous personal and professional growth opportunities.

Related: 4 Ways to Market Your Business for Free

2. Building positive social awareness.

Social media is the ultimate platform to raise social awareness -- Harambe is the perfect example of how the millennial generation is taking causes they feel strongly about, and turning them into viral stories.

In today's social setting, when something goes viral, it is often turned into a meme. Millennials understand that they can use a twist of humor to garner social media tractions.

While many social influencers are leveraging their reach for personal and financial gain, a large percentage also use it to make positive impacts in society.

Related: Use These 5 Steps to Create a Marketing Plan

3. Teaching how to use social media as a platform to achieve your dreams.

Social media stardom has created several self-made millionaires. It's opened the doors to paid endorsement deals, movies, TV, merchandise and more. While the odds of becoming rich and famous on social media are extremely slim, it's a great example of how working hard can help you achieve your dreams.

Being a social media star is an actual career these days, as crazy as that might sound to those older than the millennial generation. Social media can be the breeding ground for new opportunities, and millennials have no problem teaching others how to best use it as a launching platform to create social good.

Jonathan Long

Founder, Uber Brands

Jonathan Long is the founder of Uber Brands, a brand-development agency focusing on ecommerce.

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