Bears sell. If you regularly read our “how we chose the cover” blog, you know Canadian Geographic covers with bears on them routinely sell better on newsstand than just about anything else (wolves being the notable exception). As our newsstand sales consultant Scott Bullock puts it, bears are Canadian Geographic’s Tom Cruise (a regular on many lifestyle magazine covers because he helps sell them).
As such, it was a no-brainer for us to have Photographer-in-Residence Michelle Valberg’s feature photo essay on the Yukon’s unique population of so-called ice grizzlies as the cover story for our annual wildlife issue. The only question: which of Valberg’s stunning images would resonate most with our audience in our cover vote (which is held each issue to solicit feedback from our followers)?
In the end, the voters sided with Bullock, favouring option one (with 41 per cent), the full-bodied image of a grizzly coated in ice over the two close-up alternatives. (Options two and three earned 24 and 35 per cent of the tally.) Like Bullock, voters generally commented that they preferred seeing the entire bear, which inspired a greater appreciation of its body language and environment. Given these results, the final decision was easy. Now to see if newsstand buyers are similarly engaged with the choice!
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