“I like to read it for the city council coverage,” says Washtenaw Dairy co-owner Doug Raab. He’s talking about the Michigan Daily, which since September has been available free at the Dairy. It’s one of more than 150 off-campus sites now handing out copies of the student-run paper.
Business manager Doug Solomon, a senior in the Ross School of Business, says that while the Daily is seeing rapid growth in social media, “print is still our bread and butter.” The outreach reflects “a concerted effort on our part not only to increase our circulation around Ann Arbor but also to increase our [news] coverage of the area.” A quick scan of recent issues reveals timely, capable coverage of city council meetings mixed in with news of campus issues, sports, and arts reviews.
Daily sales and marketing advisor Kathy Ciesinski emails that the decision to expand off-campus readership grew out of a student review in 2013. It kicked off last January with drops at apartment complexes and more outdoor news boxes. About 1,000 of the 13,500 copies printed now go to apartments (such as Huron Towers), restaurants (the Broken Egg, Denny’s), and hotels (Hampton Inn, Holiday Inn).
“Not everyone spends time with their laptop, or smartphone,” Ciesinski notes. “So, the individual who goes into a place like The Northside Grill for a cup of coffee, breakfast, or lunch, can sit down with an actual newspaper.”
This article has been edited since it appeared in the February 2015 Ann Arbor Observer. The Daily’s circulation has been corrected.