Difference Between Social Networking and Professional Networking (With Table)

Networking has always been a core practice that enriches relationships and opportunities for everyone. Networking to know new people, understanding their thoughts, and sharing ideas is called social networking. And when we use networking and communication for our professional requirements and connections, it is called professional networking.

Social Networking vs Professional Networking

The difference between social and professional networking is that social networking is used by us for socializing for friendship, communication, sharing interests, and exploring people from various places whereas, professional networking is entirely based on professional relationships and for business interactions.

In the cyber age, many of us are exposed to the internet more than the sunlight! And the introduction of social networking applications and websites made life much easier and convenient. Today we can communicate virtually with anyone from across the world just by keeping ourselves connected to the internet and social networking has helped us communicate more often and more conveniently. Social networking is a core platform for finding your new friends, sharing ideas and hobbies as well as discussing a research paper whatsoever.

Just like social networking, professional networking’s major purpose includes socializing BUT for the professional and business-related aspects only. Professional networking has been a helpful tool in the 21st century for submitting job requests, monitoring job profiles, searching for business partners, advertising products or simply building formal and strong professional bonds for mutual help and growth.  It has also been used as a method for people to make money, particularly if a professional networking site is used.

Comparison Table Between Social Networking and Professional Networking

Parameters of comparisonSocial NetworkingProfessional Networking
DefinitionNetworking and connecting to various people with the help of the internet for personal purposes like friendship, discussion, etc is social networking.Networking and creating connections with professionals and business-related personalities for mutual growth and professional requirements using the internet is professional networking.
Used byIt is used by anyone who wants to socialize and gain new friends and connections.Mostly used by businessmen, freshers, professionals and workers, financial agents.
Communication typeMostly informal communication is used.Formal conversations with absolute productivity and resource sharing.
ApplicationsSocializingFriendshipChatting and discussionsExploring and understanding.Social and professional connectionsLearning and exhibiting USPs and skillsSearching and applying for jobs.
ExamplesFacebook, Instagram, Telegram, Whatsapp, Snapchat, Wechat, Twitter, etc.Linkedin, Google mail (Hybrid), Wisestep.com, Monsterjobs, Naukri.com, etc.

What is Social Networking?

The process of connecting with family and friends through websites and computer networks, sharing ideas and information with others, meeting new friends and interacting with each other, and occasionally even finding a partner. Social networking has been a pillar of our social life for a long time now, since using a social networking site or application is really simple and enjoyable.

It has become a vital tool for families that live far apart to communicate and stay in touch with one another. Others can use social networking to reconnect with long-lost friends and relatives, as well as make new acquaintances and meet people with similar interests. Virtual meets and the different methods of communications provided by the latest social networking applications and sites made it quite easy and fun to talk to people.

With consecutive updates and patches, social networking sites and applications have now become near-perfect and easy to use. Examples include Facebook by Mark Zuckerburg, Hangouts by Google, Telegram by Pavel Durov, Twitter launched by Odeo, and many more. The social network has also overlapped with many multimedia applications so that the users can enjoy the multimedia with their known ones or friends virtually themselves!  Some more features of social networking media include;

  1. Free and individual Web-Space
  2. Create a free virtual profile and identity which is customizable
  3. Emailing and free messaging services
  4. Video calling and voice calling features
  5. Uploading content and sharing content is one of the most unique and useful features.

What is Professional Networking?

Professional networking sites enable users to search for employment based on their connections to locate one that matches their credentials. Different users and potential employers can look at a user’s profile and provide recommendations. Just like social networking is used for friendships, chatting, and casual talks, professional business networking is built for working people and freshers to connect to the world of industries from the internet itself.

One must abide by the strictly formal and productive method of conversation to get the most out of professional networking. It also is recommended to set up a very formal and subtle virtual identity when making a profile in a professional networking site or application.

It also allows experts from many sectors of interest to share their thoughts and expertise, as well as enabling users to ask questions that can be answered by one’s connections and provide answers to topics about which one is informed. One can apply for jobs by simply uploading their resumes to the site’s database and the recruiters can look into the profiles with ease.

The latest features and USPs of professional networking sites include virtual interviews as well as group discussions for efficient recruitment and appointments.

Main Differences Between Social Networking and Professional Networking

  1. Social networking is used for friendly chats and making new friends whereas professional networking allows users to connect to the professional world of industries and businesses.
  2. Social networking usually aims for a convenient and informal way of conversation but, professional networking must be practiced with etiquettes and formal tones.
  3. The social networking sites and apps are aimed at everyone but professional networking sites are made for job seekers and job recruiters, or businessmen.
  4. Social networking can be used for entertainment but professional networking isn’t for entertainment or fun-seeking purposes.
  5. Examples of social networking media include Facebook, Hangouts, Instagram, Twitter, etc. Whereas, professional networking includes Linkedin, Wisestep.com, Monsterjobs, etc.

Conclusion

Both social and professional networks offer unique use cases that should not be overlooked. Professional networks offer a wide range of assistance to the end-user seeking to attain his life objectives of a better profession or simply connect to the world of bustling industries. Social networks provide a forum for individuals to express themselves in novel and distinctive ways. Also, It provides a new platform for people to connect, communicate, have fun, and even strive towards a brighter, happier future.

Social and professional networks are currently the tools of socializing and prospering in this fast-moving world. They are convenient, user-friendly, and fun to use.

References

  1. https://www.investopedia.com/terms/s/social-networking.asp
  2. https://thriveglobal.com/stories/5-essential-features-of-social-networks-that-you-need-to-know/
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