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Membership Benefits

Why Join AABP

AABP is a growing and vibrant association, dedicated exclusively to promoting high quality local and regional business publications and the provision of targeted professional development programs. We are particularly pleased with our efforts to provide meaningful member services, including:

  • An annual editorial and design awards competition managed by the School of Journalism at the University of Missouri. This is the only broad based competition to recognize excellence in our industry.
  • An Annual Publishers Conference each January which brings together industry leaders to stimulate thinking and to lead discussions about our industry and to give publishers a forum to discuss and share ideas on improving operations and generating profits.
  • A Promotion Information Exchange Program in which members digitally exchange samples of their latest promotional efforts including media kits, subscription promotion materials, renewal materials, house ads, etc.
  • Annual Conference with a track of sessions directed at each major department, including Sales, Editorial, Audience Development and Marketing/Events.
  • Annual Cost and Revenue Survey to help members benchmark their expenses and income against similar business media companies and look for ways to improve margins.

The biggest benefit of AABP, however, is the opportunity to join a network of experienced publishers who freely share their history, ideas, and knowledge. Many a member has received a jumpstart on a new program or initiative, or avoided a serious mistake in a new program idea, by having the opportunity to bounce ideas off this pool of experienced and talented colleagues.

AABP has come to represent integrity and quality in terms of the circulation, demographics and editorial product of the business publications among its members. Membership rules require that each member conduct regular demographic studies of its readers and that their circulation be audited by one of the recognized audit organizations. The Annual Editorial competition underscores our commitment to encouraging high-quality business journalism.

We look forward to receiving your application and welcoming you to the growing number of local and regional business publications that regard their membership in AABP as one of their most valuable assets.

AABP Code of Conduct

Members of the Alliance of Area Business Publishers are expected to maintain high business and journalistic standards that are befitting of publications recognized as the leaders in their field. In keeping with that goal, the Board of Directors of the association has adopted the following Code of Conduct for member publications. This Code of Conduct applies to the print and online publications of AABP members.

1. Publications should strive for accuracy, fairness and completeness in their editorial content.

2. Publications primarily should present business-to-business content representing substantial and significant original work. This content should reflect a heavy emphasis on local and regional business news and/or features..

3. Editorial content should be produced by editorial staffers and freelancers and should be under the control of the publication’s editing staff. Editorial content, including cover photographs and illustrations, should not be dictated or otherwise influenced by advertising or joint promotional efforts between a publication and an advertiser, sponsor or other outside organization. In particular, a story should never be promised in exchange for advertising or the receipt of in-kind products/services.

4. A clear distinction must be made between editorial content and advertising. All advertising that may be confused with independent editorial material must be labeled prominently as advertising, never “advertorial.” Editorial-like advertisements should be distinctly different from a publication’s editorial content in typeface, headline font, layout and design.

Recommended online practices:

1. Anything that is not produced by a publication’s editorial staff or on a for-hire basis must be clearly labeled.

2. Anything that is “for sale” needs to be labeled as a sponsorship or advertisement.

3. Any e-commerce relationship must be clearly identified so that Web site users know the publisher has an economic interest in any sales transactions that might result in a profit for the publisher.

4. Hotlinks within stories and lists must be at the discretion of editors and should not be based on pay-to-play relationships. An exception would be “enhanced” listings in features such as top lists where an advertiser would pay for a logo placement. However, those enhanced listings should be clearly marked as advertising.”

~ Adopted by the AABP Board of Directors, June 1, 2006.