Recently, I have had conversations with people about the difference between a bio and a press release. I feel like it’s worth taking some time to explain the difference between the two and why both are important.

Bio-it is an account of a person’s life. When someone has a professional bio written about them, it typically details their professional life with some personal details sprinkled in. Bios are informational pieces that set out to answer basic questions about a person or a company.

Press release-it is a document written as a way to garner interest in a person or a company. Press releases are often used to entice the media to write an article or to entice a company to consider a partnership with an organization or individual.

I have come to the realization that there are people out there that are practicing publicists that don’t fully understand this differentiation. I do understand that you don’t necessarily need a degree in PR to practice PR but if you don’t have formal training, you should at least take the time to get practical insight into the basics of the field. There are tons of blogs, websites and books that have been written about the basics of public relations and how to practice it effectively.

Stay tuned for a list of blogs, websites and books that are great educational tools for those interested in working as PR practitioners and consultants as well as those who already work in the field.