Online media circles are buzzing about a members-only club through MediaBistro. AvantGuild is the brain child of founder Laurel Touby, whose vision of a virtual media professionals guild led her to develop MediaBistro and its next-level training and employment resources. Billed as “mediabistro.com’s premium membership for anyone who works with media content,” the list of AvantGuild benefits deserves a closer look.
“How To Pitch” Tops Benefits Buzz
Without a doubt, the most talked-about plus of paid AvantGuild membership (which runs $55 a year or $89 for two years) is access to the “How To Pitch” articles. Site authors interview the top consumers of creative copy, such as top national magazine editors, and tell readers exactly what to produce and how to sell it to that specific publication. The “How To Pitch An Agent” series can now also help creative minds pitch themselves to individual and highly sought-after agents who can handle the pitch work.
But Wait, There’s More
A membership in AvantGuild includes access to HTP articles, Job listings, daily industry news briefings and feeds delivered via email, and invitations to networking cocktail parties in your area. Those benefits are partially available with the free mediabistro.com subscription. Investing in AvantGuild garners members more benefits that can be divided into the following three categories.
Professional Development and Promotion
- LexisNexis news database access
- Personal Web page hosting and email address (with portfolio capabilities)
- Editorial Calendar Guide (to know when to pitch those story ideas)
- Discounted billing software, courses and events, resume and marketing services, and the AvantGuild Freelance Marketplace
- Complimentary MetLife finance analysis
- Discounted health insurance, dental and mental health services, tax services, gym memberships, professional editing services, equipment rentals, office supplies and WiFi
- One free magazine subscription (choose from The Atlantic, Wired, New York or W) with a paid membership or renewal
- Volunteer opportunities through the Taproot Foundation
- Discounted Zipcar membership, magazine subscriptions, theater and movie tickets and rental cars through Hertz and Avis
MediaBistro is information-rich, but consensus among media pros is that a paid membership with AvantGuild can be worthwhile for anyone in the industry. It just depends on your professional goals, and what you do with AvantGuild’s networking and educational benefits.