Social Entrepreneurship : Understanding it, Types, and More

February 8, 2022 Zahra Ijaz

Social Entrepreneurship: Understanding it, Types, Examples and More

If you are someone who wants to contribute to the society you are living in, then you can do business on the basic level of Social Entrepreneurship.
It is one of the most popular emerging business concepts in the world today is gaining hype because of its contribution to society.
Let’s learn more about it in detail.


Social Entrepreneurship: Understanding it and Advantages

Entrepreneurs are people who have an idea, start a company and make money. Moreover, they write a business plan, circulate the document to the bank for capital, and work day and night to scale their company and drive profits for themselves and the investors.
However, social entrepreneurship is different. Let’s discuss it.

social entrepreneurship 2

The world we live in today is a start-up world.

Entrepreneurs have different motivations for starting a business, just like consumers have different motivations to make a purchase.

Moreover, you might have noticed a significant uptick and interest in companies that have basic alignment in social responsibility.

This means that their mission is not only to grow and make money but also to do good in the world.

This is Social Entrepreneurship.

Understanding Social Entrepreneurship

Well, basically, social entrepreneurship is doing business for a social cause.

Moreover, a social entrepreneur combines commerce and social issues in a way that helps to improve the lives of people that are connected to the issue.

It is important to note that these people do not measure their success in terms of profit.

Rather social entrepreneurs mean that they are doing something to change the world, however, they define that.

understanding it

Beyond this concept, however, there are different opinions about what constitutes social entrepreneurship.

In some cases, people believe that the definition applies to businesses that make money and work towards improving a problem by selling something to consumers.

While some believe that business owners who work alone to solve a social problem using a grant or government money are also social entrepreneurs.

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Advantages of Social Entrepreneurship

A Social Enterprise does not work as a corporate setup or a private firm works.

They offer a flexible working environment which a number of people like working in.

Moreover, it focuses on creating social capital without measuring the profit or evaluating the monetary value.

Entrepreneurs in its field are often associated with nonprofit organizations or sectors.

Furthermore, it aims to make money while also solving social problems.

You might confuse social entrepreneurship with social work, however, these two are different works.

Social entrepreneurship is basically doing business through small works or small changing steps to change society and for uplifting economic status as well.

This type of business also helps to create a stable level of employment, implement social change, create inspiring and innovative solutions.

It also lets you work as your own boss, there is no boundary to work on, and will help a huge number of members of your society.

Difference between Socialpreneur and Entrepreneur

While socialpreneurs still practice the core fundamentals of the entrepreneurial principle of starting a business, there are some key differences between the two.

Let’s discuss them

One of the most significant differences between the two is their end goals.

The former, i.e. socialpreneurs are less interested in defining their success through high-profit margins.

However, there focus more on their operations that benefit the communities of interest.

Additionally, some social enterprises may also not follow the typical organizational structure.

They can be run entirely by volunteers who do not receive the paycheck or individual contributors that participate in their own accord.

For instance, mutual aid funds are community organized.

These funds exist to meet the needs of a particular society and begin with an entrepreneurial idea.

However, is run by community members that also participate as they please.

While social entrepreneurship is a standalone venture, entrepreneurs can also begin for-profit businesses that can fund programs to support social issues.

Let’s go through some real-life examples in the next section.


Social-Entrepreneurship: Examples

In this section, we will go over some small business entrepreneurship as well as large enterprise businesses that engage in social ventures.
It is important to note that small-scale businesses work to contribute to social good, however, large for-profit organizations commit to using funds for social causes.
Keep on reading.

social entrepreneurship examples

Small Business Socialpreneurship

Some of the popular small business Social Entrepreneurship working are:

1# TranSanta This is one of the unique social entrepreneurship ventures that that community leads.

It runs an Instagram account that features and highlights stories from transgender youth in need.

Moreover, these individuals create Target wish lists of items they need and the community members can anonymously purchase and send them what they need.

2# Books to Prisoners Books to prisoners is a traditional non-profit organization that aims to end the cycle of recidivism in the prison system.

This organization accepts book donations from community members and establishes bookstores that are then re-packed and sent to incarcerated members.

They use some monetary donations to support operational costs like renting office space and purchasing supplies to mail books.

3# 734 Coffee 734 coffee is a social venture to support Sudanese refugees.

743 coffee

Furthermore, the business works with local co-op farms to grow and harvest coffee, sells products to U.S. retailers.

It uses a portion of profits to fund scholarships to Sudanese refugees.

4# Cracked It Cracked It is a smartphone repair service that has staff by “at-risk” and formally incarcerated youth.

Moreover, they teach life skills and provide employment and income opportunities to members that are looked down upon and dismissed by greater society.

5# Belu Belu sources and provides water with the lowest possible carbon footprint to hotels, restaurants, and catering businesses.


They donate all 100% of their net profits to WaterAid, which provides clean water solutions to underserved communities.

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Other Small Social Entrepreneurship

Some other popular examples are:

Tranquiliti Tranquiliti works with teachers, students, and mental health professionals to provide mental health services in schools.

Additionally, they aim to support mental wellbeing and improve educational performances by creating a positive, and supportive learning environment.

Surfrider Foundation Surfrider Foundation dedicates to environmental stewardship and volunteers and activists lead it.

Additionally, they launch campaigns and raise awareness for pollution, marine life protection, clean water, and coastal preservation.

At the moment, they have chapters in communities across the U.S.

SOIL Sustainable, Organic, Integrated Livelihoods, SOIL is a nonprofit research and development organization.

This organization works to implements sustainable, low-cost solutions to the sanitation crisis in Haiti and employ locally and 92% of every dollar donation helps to support and enact their environmental programs.

Large Business Socialpreneurship

Let’s discuss some of the large business socialpreneurship as follows:

1# TOMS One of the pioneers on social entrepreneurship is TOMs and began as a one-for-one model.

Buy a pair of shoes and TOMS will give a pair to a child in need.

Today, buying a pair of shoes or sunglasses provides shoes, water, safe birth, and bullying prevention services to people across the globe.

2# Ben & Jerry’s This is a business popular for their ice cream, and also is using profits to contribute to social good.

Their mission states: “To create linked prosperity that’s connected to our business: suppliers, farmers, franchises, customers, and neighbors alike”.

They also support positive change in environmentally friendly farming and manufacturing processes, racial justice, and more.

3# Lush Lush is a cosmetic company that provides environmental awareness and ethical consumerism.


All lush cosmetics are free of packaging and the company gives millions to environmental causes every year.

4# Good Eggs Good Eggs is an online grocery and meal kit delivery service that sets itself as part of french, local produce, and meal kits for a number of occasions.

Their mission is to provide over 70% of their foods, wine, and spirits that are locally sourced.

And every item must meet a strict list of sourcing standards.

An important thing to note is that all employees have a stake in the business.

Promoting transparent business practices and reinforcing their commitment to the health and safety of the business and communities they work with.

5# Warby Parker In 2019, this eyewear company donated about 5 million pairs of glasses to those in need of the “Buy a Pair, Give a Pair” campaign.

Moreover, they disrupted the eyewear industry and spawned countless copycat organizations.

Some other Socialpreneurship

Some other popular examples are:

Uncommon Goods Independent makers are the backbone of this company and they offer a marketplace for creatives to sell their goods.

They aim of having a positive impact on people and the world.

Moreover, they work to minimize their environmental impact and work with artists to use sustainable or recycled materials whenever possible.

GoldieBlox A multimedia company that commits to disrupting the “pink aisle in toy stores” by using storytelling.

Additionally, they aim to make Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, STEM fields fun and engaging for young women.

It focuses on a demographic field that is systematically underrepresented and underserved in the industry.

 Pipeline Angels In 2017, about 30% of the U.S. angel investors were women and only 12% were minorities.

Pipeline Angels aim to disrupt that statistic and commits to creating capital and investing opportunities for trans women, cis women, and others.

The boot camp educates investors, offers mentoring opportunities, and even hosts a pitch summer for entrepreneurs seeking funding.


Social Entrepreneurship: Types and Characteristics

There are different types of social entrepreneurship.
If you intend to begin with this idea, you can choose among any of them in the following section.

Moreover, we will also discuss the characteristics of Social Entrepreneurship.
What are they? Keep on reading.

social entrepreneurship 3


The following are the 4 types of social Entrepreneurship:

Community Social Entrepreneur

Community Social Entrepreneurs are small-scale change makers.

These can be young individuals teaching underprivileged kids in a town, a group of college students running sanitation and plantation drives in a city.

Or one or more organizations working for social good.

Moreover, Community social entrepreneurs work in certain geographies and communities, however, for a number of causes.

From hygiene and sanitation to employment and food distribution services.

From plantation and environment safety to providing employment to deserving ones, they do it all.

Moreover, these types of social enterprises are the ones who bring about instant changes and aims to strive for more.

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Non-Profit Social Entrepreneur

These social entrepreneurs believe in reinvesting their profits.

Along with the initial cost, they also put their profits into the cause they believe n.

For instance, if they uptake a project about educating children from underprivileged backgrounds and they receive more funds than they need.

Thye will utilize even the surplus to educate women and expand their portfolio.

Moreover, if you have a business-oriented mindset then you can continue with this type of model.

Not just that, different companies and organizations also choose non-profit social entrepreneurship to use their social goodwill for the cause.


Transformational Social Entrepreneur

These focus on establishing a business model that can help to solve a purpose that the government initiates and other businesses cannot.

Transformational social entrepreneurship is more like running an organization, where you will hire shilled workforce.

Think of new and unique ways to stay relevant in the market, follow guidelines that the government issues, and do everything that an enterprise will do.

The large picture, however, for this model includes a collaborative set-up of different businesses serving the society together and individually.

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Global Social Entrepreneur

GLobal SOcial Entrepreneurs think on a larger scale and focus on changes at the global level.

Moreover, they put their social responsibility above profits.

They often collaborate with organizations working on the same causes in a specific region or country.

One of the most relevant examples of this model is Make A Wish Foundations.

It works in around 50 countries, fulfilling the wishes of critically ill children.

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Characteristics of a Social Entrepreneur

If you are a social entrepreneur, then you will also need people with the following traits:

Leadership You can not meet your goals if you do not have a highly motivated team to assist you.

For every cause, you need to be a good and inspirational leader and can also influence the opinions and physical outputs.

Emotional Balance Social work needs you to be both an empath and have a practical approach at the same time.

If you are someone who is highly emotional then you might overwhelm and this will also affect your team.

However, if you are emotionally balanced, then you can handle difficult situations with ease.

Social entrepenurer

Vision Often visionaries come up with the best solutions to sical problems.

Why? Because they are thinking of long-term, permanent resolutions.

Abilty to Multitask Both entrepreneurship and multitasking go hand-in-hand.

Furthermore, only an exceptional manager can juggle meetings, pitches, on-site activities, soucing, production, and whatnot.

Decision Making As a social entrepreneur, you need to prioritize and make sound decisions that will eventually affect the lives of those in neds.

Moreover, you and your team need to think of a situation holistically and make a sound and rational decision.

Open to Collaborations You cannot do your work in isolation.

Hence, you need to be open to collaborations and partnerships.

Every project needs people with different expertise and skill set and you also needed to work with a wide variety of people to achieve their vision.

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Start Working Today

Do you have any Social Entrepreneurship business models?
Do you want to change your business into a social entrepreneurship model?
Let us know by commenting in the section below which business model you intend to use for your business.

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