Where we came from

Drawing from his experience in point of sale solutions, Jay Gorter launched a technology company in 2011 called Grapevine Digital Signage. Grapevine offered digital and video solutions for retailers and corporate customers, including hotel properties. These relationships in the hospitality industry led to the development of a new venture to leverage technology assets to create a visitors channel for Traverse City hotel guests. ExploreTC was born in 2013.

What began with 10 hotels broadcasting our in-room network has grown to 22 properties, in over 2480 hotel rooms. ExploreTC became a media company with a focus on educating the traveler with advertising and locally produced creative content promoting the region.

When the opportunity arose to purchase a well-respected magazine focused on Traverse City restaurants ExploreTC made the leap into print media and purchased the Traverse City Dining Guide in 2014.

Attracted by a shared mission and mutual respect for quality creative content, Visitors Media began working with Brandy Wheeler, founder of Traverse Traveler, a 13-year-old Traverse City marketing service. Together they built entertaining and informative 3-minute videos to share Traverse Traveler tips on the channel, including Wine Tasting Tips and What To Do on a Rainy Day in Traverse City. They quickly discovered a synergy that led to joining forces and uniting three brands under one roof.

In 2015, Traverse Traveler merged into Visitors Media. With the merger Visitors Media has assembled the right team, and the right solutions, to reach the traveler from the lobby to the room and beyond, and on every platform from print to broadcast to mobile apps.

What we do

We are a media company with proprietary marketing solutions designed to reach travelers.

We are a technology company with a passion for helping small businesses.

We are creators, brand managers, innovators and entrepreneurs.

Why we do it

We’re passionate about the Northern Michigan region we’re lucky enough to call home. Through our media outlets we can entertain and educate travelers from a local’s perspective.

Meet the team

Jay Gorter

Jay Gorter 

Owner, Visitors Media founder, chief technical support, master of the spreadsheet, early bird

Jay’s 30 years of technical know-how and a passion for helping small businesses grow lead him to found Visitors Media. He’s a hold-the-tomato, work hard, play fair, Go Green, love dogs and spend time with family kinda guy. His responsibilities include password keeping, customer service, Petoskey stone hunting and providing the left-brain ying to our right-brain yang.

Brandy Wheeler

Brandy Wheeler 

Owner, Traverse Traveler founder, idea generator, Apple fan girl, dangerous with a Sharpie

Brandy is a designer by trade, teacher by nature and comes from a long line of entrepreneurs. She brings 25 years of experience in the creative industry to the Visitors Media team. When she’s not sharing her love of Northern Michigan on social media—or in front of camera—you’ll find her by the water, snapping photos of food and family.