New Gift Guide Class Category in Training TuneUps

Tin Shingle has over 115 Training TuneUps that focus on different areas of creating buzz around your business for you to stream at any time. We have been training businesses like yours for so many years, that we have amassed quite a collection of classes in niche topics that dig deep into important PR and marketing strategies. This calls for a Spring Cleaning! We are organizing these in a more finite way for you, with our first new category:

Gift Guides

Our Public Relations classes category is so extensive, that we are dividing it up so that you can go deep on important issues that will make a big difference in your business right away.

As we inch closer to Summer, we want you to be prepared for pitching those Holiday Gift Guides. Because yeah - that starts in summer! Charge your laptop, because you’ve got some work to do poolside.

All of Tin Shingle's online classes are available to stream free with the Level 3 TuneUp Membership or higher. All others can purchase their favorite classes and keep them forever.

How to Pick a Domain Name - And Protect It Long Term

Photo Credit: Tin Shingle

Photo Credit: Tin Shingle

Isn't picking a domain name easy? You just go to Dotster or GoDaddy (skip GoDaddy...we don't recommend), and type in a domain name and presto - you have a business!

Wrong. So wrong. There's a lot of thought that goes into picking your business name and domain name. Ideally, they should match. The process to pick a domain name is written about here in Tin Shingle's Tip section. Find 3 major pieces of domain naming advice in that article that you can use now, or the next time you think of a name for your domain and business.

New Vanity Fair Editor, Radhika Jones, Opens Up in Her Editor’s Letter

Loved the Editors Letter from Vanity Fair’s new editor, Radhika Jones, as she presents the April issue after taking the reins from Graydon Carter. She stated she intends to strive to follow the pulse set by former V.F. editor in chief Tina Brown. April’s issue is all female, without maybe intending to be so. Just refreshing spotlights and story angles.

Looking forward to this #mediamonitoring! 


Cooking Light Media Contacts Updated in Tin Shingle's Collection

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New Media Contacts for Cooking Light Magazine have been updated to Tin Shingle's Member Center. Easily search for an editor or writer at this magazine who may be a great fit for your pitch idea.

Want immediate access...Subscribe or login to Tin Shingle's Membership Level 4 Media Lists All Access Pass to unlock now. Looking for a different magazine or writer? Email your requests and Tin Shingle's team will research them and add them to our collection. 

Sneak Peek:


Keep Going: A PR Placement Will Happen For You If You Keep Trying

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Scrolling through Instagram one afternoon, this mega artist, Ashley Longshore, was in the feed, holding up a full page feature on her art in the New York Times. She's a pretty hilarious, intense artist who makes bold and empowering statements in her art. If you need a serious pick-me-up to keep going in your artist or entrepreneurial career, do follow her Instagram feed.

She captured her joy at getting the full page feature in the New York Times here in this post, and her message is one you need to see and remember on your PR journey:


Republished from @ashleylongshoreart Instagram:

ashleylongshoreart I just woke up to a PAGE in the New York TIMES!!!! Im sobbing... absolutely sobbing....... just please know.... above all things.... to keep hope and be optimistic.... believe in yourself..... i am a self taught artist from montgomery alabama. I was an insecure nerd. I grew to love myself when the world felt cold and scary.... please.... do the same for yourself.... love yourself and work hard..... believe in the magic of life... i love you..... i love you so much. This moment is absolutely indescribable... #ashleylongshore #popart #fuckyeah


Take a look at how Ashley is making more out of this PR placements, and all of her recent placements. Once you get that press, lift the best parts of it and call it out to your people. To make a graphic like this, you could use the DIY design tool, PicMonkey to doing some fancy flyer work on your phone, or you could hire your graphic designer to do it for you. Either way, it's a good time and/or money investment as you leverage that press to do more for your brand.

More PR Tips & Tools on Tin Shingle

"I Got Into PeopleStyleWatch, How Can I Leverage This Opportunity? (a strategy that an be applied to many other fashion magazines!)"
- by Kelly Kepner of Kelly Kepner PR

PR Training TuneUp: Spring Training for Your PR Campaign
(a Tin Shingle Training TuneUp online class)

Thinking bigger and getting outside of your brain is always possible with friends. Get ideas and feedback from other Tin Shinglers in our Community by activating a Community Membership.

Pitch a media outlet like this. Tin Shingle's easy to use Media Contact Database can help you find names quickly, and help you get access to different writers and editors you hadn't thought of pitching before. Get the Media Lists All Access Pass for membership with Tin Shingle.

Real Simple Media Contacts Updated in Tin Shingle's Collection

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New Media Contacts for Real Simple Magazine have been updated to Tin Shingle's Member Center. Easily search for an editor or writer at this magazine who may be a great fit for your pitch idea. A benefit to scrolling through our simple and easily list of over 3,000 names is that you'll think of people in departments you hadn't considered before!

Begin brainstorming now...Subscribe or login to Tin Shingle's Membership Level 4 Media Lists All Access Pass for immediate access.

Here's a sneak peek of what the Media Contact Lists look like, and how easy they are to search:

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Members Only Seal for Tin Shingle Resources

Look for this Members Only seal on Tin Shingle products designed exclusively for members, like our searchable Media Contacts and Editorial Calendar databases, Hashtag Cheat Sheets, and others.

Details to join for stepping up your PR and Marketing game:

See you soon in our Community!


First Response to Mark Zuckerberg's Testimoniy: Facebook's Problems Will Persist

Many thoughts are percolating after Mark Zuckerberg's historic first testimony yesterday before a House Committee. I'm preparing Tin Shingle's TuneUp on a Facebook Backup Plan for marketers and business owners, but below are my thoughts as first published to my own friends on Facebook, as I also prepare to scale way back on emotional moments I put into Facebook, and the photos of my family that I plan to remove:

Mark Zuckerberg’s Achilles Heel is that he thinks that data and the computing of that data can solve everything. He has a developer’s mind with a brain that works very much like a database, and that landscape is what he understands. When presented with the question today of if Facebook is a Tech company or a Publishing company, he picked Tech (I’m not even sure what “tech” means because all tech produces something outside of itself).

Facebook is a publishing company. People self-publish. There is no filter. No editor. Aside from a very few admins of groups, and still, selection is then up to their ethics and positions on censorship and filtering for good health.

Then, there are machine editors in the algorithms, and that circles back to data. Facebook is a publishing company. People publish to it largely uncensored. People become cannibals of their own minds by beating themselves up in their own minds, and beating each other up outwardly - but silently - semi-privately - on groups - or people’s pages or business pages. Facebook lets people become social cannibals, destroying each other. Even the good ones get inward and throw stones. Zuckerberg started Facebook as a place to rate people’s “hotness”. It started as a judgement zone. It remains so.

Businesses who are on to disseminate information are siphoned by Facebook and need to pay to play. But even those rules are skewed, and the people who want to see our businesses can’t when they want to. Unless they dig into Facebook settings to require that they see the information first. Same for friends and family.

I don’t see Facebook’s problems getting solved anytime soon because Zuckerberg is too database/computer driven, and not thoughtful enough. He has a responsibility as a publisher. He’s hands off, but he’s the enabler. Sheryl Sandberg is not empathetic enough to understand either. She learns with life experience, sadly, like the lesson she learned about bereavement leave when her husband passed. And Zuckerberg will too when his child gets addicted to Facebook or videos or to headlines the way all of us have. And then Zuckerberg will understand. But not until then. His choices, in the meantime, while well-meaning, are not ones I trust.

Don’t get me started on listening speakers. All I can tell you is - don’t let a talking speaker in your home. From any of them. Amazon. Facebook. Google. It’s an open listening device that can be tapped into, or more of your words sold for advertising and retargeting to market to you. Smart, machine-based marketing, but lazy marketing that trades on privacy currency. URL Shorterner Stops Serving - 2 Big Impacts for Small Businesses


Wait...what? stopped working? Stopped URL shortening?

Yes. Sort of. For Normal People. For developers and large companies, Google has Firebase Dynamic Links as the new option. Ever since March 30, 2018, you couldn't use anymore to create a shortened URL. What is a shortened URL? It's when you take a really long link, like this one:

And turn it into something that looks like this: . You would do this to share a shorter, easier link in social media or an email so that people don't get overwhelmed with looking at a really long link, and to fit with tight character (aka letter) restrictions at places like Twitter, which mandate that you write in 140 characters or less. Or they used to, and now that policy has shifted and more characters are allowed. You would also do this to get tracking data on how many people clicked on that link.

According to Google:


Starting March 30, 2018, we will be turning down support for URL shortener. From April 13, 2018 only existing users will be able to create short links on the console. You will be able to view your analytics data and download your short link information in csv format for up to one year, until March 30, 2019, when we will discontinue Previously created links will continue to redirect to their intended destination.


Translation into Normal Person: Google will stop shortening URLs, unless you use their new API. provided analytics to show you how many people clicked on your shortened link, and that will only be available to you for a year from now - via a download of an Excel document. No longer with an easy to read webpage in a interface be available to you.

Further details were provided on's blog, where they revealed that really they are continuing to develop URL shortening technology - probably on steroids - but only for API use. API (Application Programming Interface) is basically a connection between a fancy tool like the future aka Firebase, and a website run by a business owner.

Setting up or working with an API is no easy feat and requires investment into relationships with knowledgeable programmers to get this done for you. Tin Shingle uses a few APIs for certain things. We won't for because we didn't rely on this tracking data, but here's what this means for you:

Reminder That Free 3rd Party Tools May Stop Working

When you use a mega-awesome tool for free, this comes with a risk. The risk is that the tool will stop working. Or disappear overnight. Or disappear in 1 month with a heads-up announcement before it implodes. We have seen this with other tools that just...stop working. One such was a Cloud storage service. I already forget the name, but one day, users of it got an email saying that in one month, all data would be gone because Facebook bought it, and that's a wrap. #soannoying That's when I moved to Dropbox and happily pay them to store my data. Check out these search results to see how many cloud storage companies this happened to.

Tech Companies Looking to Profit May Benefit From the End of Free, Simple

This is a mystery to me - the Unicorn tech companies who create big, beautiful things, but don't make money. Rather, they make investor infusion cash, but not actual money from their business models working. This is curious to me because the free model can obscure pricing for those companies that do provide the service, and do it based on monies they actually earn from customers, not VC or angel investors. is a URL shortening company that does charge for the service of shortening URLs, and does offer it for free. has created a beautiful website that is easy to use, as opposed to Google's (now known as Alphabet) which usually lack a beautifully designed interface because developers are kings in those parts. Not to knock a developer, but a developer focuses on data and just making sure the data is available to people, and a designer transforms that data - often cutting it out - so that a Normal Person can use it without getting overwhelmed.

Looks like many people are headed over to from, as has set up a pop-up box for it in their lower right corner of their website.'s been hard at work educating their customers and future customers with helpful marketing webinars, and other resources. Hopefully this new development of a free service being taken off the market works in their favor!

Hashtag Highlights Roundup - What The Magazines Are Using Right Now

Tin Shingle's Instagram Hashtag Cheat Sheet

One of our favorite groups of hashtags to highlight - the print magazines! "What Hashtags Magazines are Using Now."  Because guess what. Your photo could wind up in the pages of those magazines - just because you got your photo in front of an editor's eyes who is following that hashtag! This is one of our favorite tricks.

If you are a follower of our Hashtag Highlight blog series you probably have started a list of your own favorite hashtags. The real diggers of awesome information have dug into Tin Shingle's collection in our Instagram Hashtag Cheat Sheet in the The Boards section of Tin Shingle's Member Center on our website, available to members only. In this roundup, we're pulling up some of our favorite ones.

#LiveBravely - Outside Magazine

#DisruptAging - AARP The Magazine

#HowWeFun - Family Circle

#LikeABoss - Rachael Ray Everyday

#HowISummer - Food & Wine

PS: You must be logged into your Tin Shingle Member Center account to get to all of the hashtags we've curated. Membership at the Community Level 1 is required. If you're not an upgraded member, do it here!