Philby said he understands some might think the magazine lacks an authentic feel, given the staff doesn’t live here, and there’s no clear way for a Michigander to reach them with an article idea.
“But they want results,” he said. “They want to reach the markets in the most cost-effective way.”
The magazine’s writers have to visit destinations to make sure it’s a quality experience, and the staff frequently visits Michigan, he said.
Philby said the magazine has a custom publishing unit, which also has published travel guides for two other states, and publishes travel-focused inserts for many states.
MEDC might consider breaking down the bid, or awarding a Michigan magazine oversight of editorial content, Begnoche said.
“If someone presented that in their bid to us, it’s something we’d consider in the review process,” she said.
The guide isn’t available at local bookstores, the Traverse City Convention and Visitor Bureau or the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce. A free print copy may be ordered online, but it takes a few weeks. Digital editions are available at puremichigan.com.
The MEDC also distributes 350,000 copies during the year at various events throughout the state.