Canadian Magazine Industry News
14 May 2013,     TORONTO
Routes magazine ceases publication
Routes Media Inc. has announced it will cease publishing Routes magazine, a hip lifestyle magazine for rural Southern Alberta, after the May/June 2013 issue.

Published six times a year, Routes showcases life in Southern Alberta with articles and photography featuring local talent, businesses, arts and entertainment events, sports and human interest stories.
 
Routes magazine May/June issue cover
Routes magazine May/June issue cover
 
"It's been a lot of fun, for sure," Sandra Weibe, editor and founder of Routes, said in an interview with Masthead. "The community has been really warm to us. I got really fortunate by meeting different people in the community and finding an extraordinary art director and photographer. We've really enjoyed being a part of the AMPA (Alberta Magazine Publishers Association)."
 
The magazine concept came from a senior project while Weibe was studying journalism at Mount Royal University. By the end of the program, Weibe had a business plan and mock-up for the magazine, which she put to use. Routes launched its first issue in November 2008 and has published a total of 22 editions. It is a complimentary magazine with a print run of 13,000.
 
The decision to cease publication is a financial one, Weibe explained. "They (readers) love the product…but struggling with getting advertising is really the biggest problem. It's been a struggle trying to get the sales numbers up," she said.
 
While chasing ad clients, Weibe realised there was a lack of branding awareness and advertising services in the local business community. Many businesses advertised irregularly or at the last-minute. She explained that not only was the magazine trying to sell ad space to businesses, it was also trying to sell them on the idea of advertising in general.  

As a result, Routes Media started offering services such as custom publishing, design and branding to fill the market void. Now, the company plans to expand on that side of its business. 

Weibe said readers will continue to find local events and stories on the website, routesmagazine.ca, which will stay up for the time being. The printed May/June issue is in circulation now.
— Sola DaSilva
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