When most people talk about social media, they’re usually referring to platforms like Facebook or Instagram, but rarely think of LinkedIn as part of the vast array of social media platforms available.

We tend to assume that LinkedIn isn’t such a valuable place to be and often, even businesses make this mistake, assuming that it would be far more beneficial to focus on their presence on Twitter, for example.

There is a logic behind this – LinkedIn is a place for businesses, but I’m looking to advertise to real people, and they are going to be on other, more laid-back platforms, so I might as well go there, too.

This logic is flawed. Why? We’re just about to show you.

On LinkedIn, You Can Build Your Brand

This is true both for individuals looking to expand their job potential, and for businesses wanting to grow their brand.

As an individual, where can a possible employer find you? On Facebook or Instagram. But do you really want them to see that snapshot of you in your undies at the beach, or the dirty joke you posted last night?

Probably not. These are personal details about you that chip away at your professional brand.

You need a place that showcases all your professional assets and past experience. A place where you can write intelligent and well-thought out entries that are both relaxed and personal, but also convey that you are a professional. That’s LinkedIn.

It’s the same for businesses. Another business you’re looking to partner with doesn’t want to see your witty Instagram ad campaign, clever though it may be. It wants to see you as a good investment for the future.

It’s a Great Place for Networking

This is the main benefit of LinkedIn, in our opinion.

It can help you find new people, both in your work sector and in others. People you may want to collaborate in the near future. It’s like giving your card to a hundred businesses, but without actually having to drive around from place to place.

And if you post clever, appealing content to the platform, chances are other business owners and like-minded individuals will follow you. This doesn’t only mean they’ll be aware of you, as a brand, but also that they might recommend you to others.

LinkedIn is also a great way to keep track of your contacts.

Professionals don’t become friends on Facebook, but rather add each other on LinkedIn. That’s because professionals don’t want to see a picture of your kids at Sunday’s barbecue, but would like to keep track of your professional info.

It Helps You Keep Track of Competitors as Well

Because let’s face it, all businesses have them. And you have to keep track of what they are doing in order to stay atop of the game, right? Well, there’s no better place to do that than LinkedIn.

Just like your Facebook profile isn’t very telling for a potential business partner, your competitors’ Facebook page won’t really tell you what they’re up to.

And you need to keep that in mind, in order to grow, as a business.

Wrapping Up: Is Linkedin Social Media?

Yes, and it’s safe to assume it is one of the best, especially for career and business professionals. (and they share memes too, sometimes)

Many people make the mistake of assuming LinkedIn is just a good job board, when in truth, it’s been shown to be 277% more effective than other social media platforms. So don’t make that mistake.

Read more: Leaving a Company? Don’t Forget the Separation Process on LinkedIn