It has been a very busy year at Western Sportsman and The Outdoor Edge magazines. For those that aren’t one of our 80,000-plus subscribers, I’m the editor of both of these magazines… the two largest circulation fishing and hunting publications in Western Canada.
Our May/June issues have just shown up on newsstands and in subscribers’ mailboxes, so I thought it would be a good opportunity to recap the 2011 issues thus far.
Personally, I think these have been some of our best issues ever — and certainly some of the nicest covers as well. And readers seem to agree, as Western Sportsman (the only newsstand publication of the two) has seen such a huge growth in newsstand sales over the past few years it boggles the mind.
Consider this: when I took over as editor in 2005, our Jan/Feb issue was selling about 1,300 copies on the newsstand and our Jul/Aug sold about 1,600.
Last year, our Jan/Feb issue sold well over 6,000 copies on the newsstand alone, and the Jul/Aug issue sold over 10,000 on the newsstand.
(For comparisons’ sake, in the West, we out-sell Outdoor Canada, Fly Fusion and Alberta Outdoorsman by a WIDE margin! I would share the numbers, but that’s more of an internal thing… no need to embarrass anyone here 😉 )
Yes, I’m proud of that, just in case you were wondering.
Add those figures to our ~22,000 subscribers and you’ve got some good numbers.
And The Outdoor Edge? Strong — with more than 55,000 subscribers and growing, thanks to distributorship to wildlife federation members across the West.
But the real proof we’re doing well are the letters. Simply put, there is no better litmus test of a healthy, active readership than the amount of letters you get. And judging by the 300-plus reader-submitted photos we have in the queue and the two pages of “Letters to the Editor” we publish in each magazine, each issue, again — things are going well.
Western Sportsman magazine’s new website is set to take things to a whole new level in ’11.
Life’s good on top!