21 podcasts to help you outsmart your competition in 2017

07 Jun 2017 | Research & Business Knowledge

21 Podcasts to Help You Outsmart Your Competition in 2017

Open your favorite podcast app, and start adding these. Stat.

By Jeremy Goldman Founder and CEO, Firebrand Group @jeremarketer

While podcasts have been around for over a decade, many of you are recent converts. Now that the technology to create them has gone mainstream, there are many more to pick from. It's harder to figure out what to listen to in order to outsmart your competition in 2017.

Luckily, I've got you covered. Get ready to start downloading:

1. WSJ Tech News Briefing

Want some fresh intel that will help you stay abreast of what's going in the tech world? Every day, the Wall Street Journal brings you a quick hit (seven to ten minutes, approximately) of news about today's hottest tech topics, from mobile wallets to fake news to cybersecurity.

2. HBR IdeaCast

Hosted by Harvard Business Review editor Sarah Green Carmichael, the HBR IdeaCast is, unexpectedly, one of the smartest listens out on the market today. It's not uncommon to have guests such as Harvard Business School professors Bharat Anand and Nancy Koehn, but the show liberally invites standouts from outside the Harvard community, such as author David Burkus and commentator Anne-Marie Slaughter.

3. Inc. Uncensored

Believe it or or not, there is indeed an Inc. podcast, where editors and writers get together to go beyond the headlines, and really dive into the trends driving today's hottest startups. This show is so engaging, you'll wonder why the heck we don't do everything in audio.

4. The Growth Show

Brought to you by HubSpot, this show is focused on how to grow a company, start a movement, or execute and scale an idea. Every week, HubSpot CMO Kipp Bodnar sits down with a luminary who's done something truly remarkable, from finance entrepreneur Ramit Sethi to Buffer CEO Joel Gascoigne. This show embraces failure, including honest conversations with some really impressive people about the setbacks they encountered on their way to growth.

5. The Katie Couric Podcast

When the biggest complaint about a show is that there aren't enough episodes, you know it must be doing most things right. Couric has had some of the sharpest minds around, as well as the most provocative, including Edward Snowden, Samantha Bee, and Thomas Friedman. Consistently, Couric and co-host Brian Goldsmith deliver the kind of interviews that prove, if anything, interviewing is an actual, honest-to-goodness talent.

6. Killer Innovations

Phil Mckinney's excellent podcast leverages his years of experience as an innovator and former CTO of Hewlett-Packard. It's now in its twelfth season, meaning it has a tremendously valuable back catalog, too.

7. Minter Dialogue

Otherwise known as Digital Marketing / Branding with Minter Dial, this podcast features longtime tech innovator Minter Dial (who has one of the cooler names out there – admit it) in conversation with some terrific under the radar marketers, innovators, and entrepreneurs.

8. The Tim Ferriss Show

According to the man himself, The Tim Ferriss Show is about "deconstructing greatness." Tim interviews an eclectic mix of public figures from Arnold Schwarzenegger to Tony Robbins, picking their brains in order to find out exactly what makes them tick, and thus what makes them so successful. From morning routines to productivity tips to favorite books, every guest has something new to provide.

9. PNR: This Old Marketing

When it comes to content marketing, PNR — AKA (Joe) Pulizzi and (Robert) Rose — are two of the best in the business. A typical episode runs a bit under an hour, and includes a few stories from the content marketing arena from the past week, as well as rants and/or raves about especially positive or negatives developments in the content marketing world.

10. Everyday MBA

Kevin Crane has hit on a terrific hook for a show: nowadays, you can get access to top-selling business authors, leading innovators, and game-changing executives to bring you some of what they don't teach you in business school. Hear from some of the sharpest minds, including Dan Negroni, Drew Neisser, Jodi Okun, and many others you'll be glad you're now intimately acquainted with.

11. Beaks & Geeks

Brought to you by Penguin Random House, Beaks & Geeks features candid sit-downs with authors like Alison Pataki, Dave Kerpen, and Christina Henry. These are more intimate conversations that will give you insights how these top minds outsmarted others in an incredibly competitive field in order to reach their intended targets.

12. All the Social Ladies

It's all too often that women don't get their due in business, and that's incredibly unfortunate – especially because you may have not heard of some of these successful individuals. Luckily, host Carrie Kerpen brings you a terrific lineup of guests to learn from, including Ami Mathur (Honest Tea), Lindsay Kaplan (Casper), and Lauren Friedman (Adobe).

13. Think Again

Big Think's podcast site is centered around a fascinating concept: it surprises some of the world's sharpest thought leaders with ideas they're not prepared to discuss. The list of luminaries who have been guests is consistently impressive: William Shatner, Tim Ferriss, Salman Rushdie, Anne Rice, and Jim Gaffigan, among others.

14. Planet Money

This long-running podcast is an NPR staple that lets listeners delve into the unexpected as a means of understanding the economy. From stories about how Facebook protects its intellectual property, to how we went from candles made out of cow fat to seemingly limitless amounts of light, to how the fake news business has emerged as a viable career path, Planet Money routinely delves into the unexpected, and gives you new ideas about how to outsmart the competition.

16. Freakonomics

If you've ever wanted to outsmart your competition by looking at everything differently, this is the podcast for you. The show professes to explore "the hidden side of everything," which is a pretty good way of describing it. A common thread that runs throughout the episodes, helmed by journalist Stephen Dubner, is that actions often have unintended consequences, from well-meaning laws to anti-police protests to even the act of standing in line. Plus, this podcast may very well have the strongest archive of episodes on this list.

17. TED Radio Hour

If you've never had the chance to listen to a TED talk up close and personal, this podcast is pretty much the next best thing. Co-produced by NPR and TED, this show brings you the best of TED talks from some of the world's most inspirational speakers. What's best about this show is that each episode bundles a few TED talks together around specific themes, such as compassion, stress, food, and more — so you can bounce directly to episodes with topics that will help you outsmart your direct competitors.

18. Duct Tape Marketing

This podcast is a wonderful interview-style show that touches on all sorts of business and marketing tactics relevant to today's working professionals, and is especially relevant for small businesses. With its eclectic and impressive guest list, this podcast has something for everyone.

19. Social Pros Podcast

Social Pros is one of the most popular marketing podcasts in the world, for good reason. Jay Baer (Convince & Convert) and Adam Brown (Salesforce)'s show is all about the complex and at times nebulous world of social media, as well as people who depend on it for their job. Guests are veteran strategists working for large corporations like Ford and IBM, to see what they care about and what they're doing right (and wrong).

20. Marketing Over Coffee

The podcast that's "at the intersection of marketing and technology," Marketing Over Coffee is an engaging, casual show that discusses marketing tactics old and new. Christopher Penn and John Wall are marketing nerds in the best sense, talking about the latest marketing news, with a specific focus on analytics and data-centric hacks.

21. The Art of Charm Podcast

Learn some top strategies to improve your career, confidence, and overall well-being from top business minds and thought leaders like Charles Duhigg, Ramit Sethi and Simon Sinek. With a quality list of inspirational individuals who have outsmarted their own competition, how can you go wrong?