Best Digital Marketing Podcasts
August 30, 2021
Whether on the go or sitting at your desk, podcasts provide a passive listening experience that allows you to learn almost through osmosis. All you have to do is press play.
The major drawback to marketing podcasts is that they’re produced, first and foremost, by marketers. That means the temptation to hawk their own services is almost irresistible. If you can slice through those though and find the ones that offer real, actionable advice, it can be a goldmine.
But where else will you have free, unfiltered access to some of the top industry minds, talking about current marketing topics that you’re probably going through yourself? Whether through a formal script or casual conversations and interviews, podcasts hit all the right notes because they are relevant.
Star ratings and reviews are great ways to cut through the noise and find the best ones, but it also comes down to individual taste. The ones on this list are the ones that not only resonate with people the most, but are also informative, entertaining, and cut right to the chase.
What Makes a Great Digital Marketing Podcast?
Answering this question is akin to asking a mother which one of their children is their favorite. Everyone has their own opinions, and depending on the day, one podcast may rule over the rest of them.
Still, there are few factors that need to be taken into consideration every single time you hit that subscribe button, many of which are outlined below. Think through your own personal schedule and likes and dislikes, and be sure to listen to a few of each in order to get a good idea what kind of podcast you’re listening to.
Not every great podcast is long, and not every terrible podcast is short, despite what some might think. What we should really be looking for when it comes to the length of a podcast is whether or not they provide the best information in the shortest amount of time. A podcast that rambles is just as terrible as one that is too short to provide any actionable information.
Let's face it, marketers are busy people, and digesting podcasts for many of them is like reading the newspaper. They want the news, and they want the tips, and they want to move on.
How often you listen to podcasts is totally your personal choice, but if there are several months between episodes, the information is going to naturally be outdated very quickly.
That being said, you also don't want to feel you have to constantly play catch up in order to get all the information. Some of the most successful podcasts in the world release a new episode every single day, but the only way you can pull something like that off is if you have a devoted audience that is eager to listen every single morning. If not, you'll lose your audience.
Ideally, a once a week, or even a once a month frequency is best. This allows you to develop high quality material in a timely manner, while also not exhausting your audience.
At the end of the day, people who listen to podcasts want to be entertained. Since there is a fun way and a boring way to deliver the same amount of information, you'll almost always want to pick the way that will keep your audience entertained. If the host is boring, it's much easier to turn it off.
This is precisely why cohosts and interview-based podcasts work so well. They juxtapose one personality with another, doubling the chances that a potential audience member will resonate with one of them. If you find a host that you like, it’s almost a virtual certainty that you’ll keep listening, no matter how long they talk or what kind of topics are talked about.
Some people prefer formal, script-based podcasts, where the information that is distributed is done so professionally and without much commentary. Others want a format that brings in experts, creating a listening experience where conversations develop naturally. This can lead to remarkable insights and discussions around completely unplanned topics.
No matter which way you prefer, you should do a sample of different styles to find the right fit for you. Learning is completely subjective, as is entertainment, but the format can also change within the podcasts. Listening to more than one episode is the only way to get a true sample size of what the podcast is all about.
What Kind of Topics are Covered?
Just like it is completely up to you as to which podcast you listen to, so it is also completely up to the podcast or as to what topics they want to cover. Most of them either choose to cover something that they know is a gap inside the market, thus exploiting their maximum audience potential, or some just want to have fun with it and talk shop about the subjects that interest in the most.
Both of these have their own individual success rates, but by and large, the formats that are covered on digital marketing podcasts are pretty similar. Some may be exclusively one way or the other, but most are a mix of the below formats.
- Case studies - Whenever someone tries something new, or has a revelation about the market that they want to disclose to others, they’ll usually go step-by-step through specific instances in which it worked for them in a case study. These can be remarkable sources of insight, not only because you see the end result, but the line of thinking as well.
- Interviews - Does it get any better than interviews with already successful people? If you're interested in knowing how a person went from point A to point Z, then interviews can do that and more. Sometimes they're a celebrity guest, but more often than not, they're industry professionals that have been around the block a few times.
- Current events - When a new algorithm update takes place, or a new platform starts to gain traction, the smart marketers will want to be on top of it. The smart broadcasters, in turn, will be quick to the trigger, releasing at least a small tidbit of information about it on their shows. This may make up most of the podcast, assuming that the news is big, or it could just be a minor issue that needs reporting.
- How-To's - One surefire way to spot a podcast that is aimed at beginners is to see if there is a lot of instructional content. While some of these how-to's can be actually advanced level tactics, if they’re only covering the basics, that might be one to avoid, unless you're in need of that information. Regardless, they can also provide a good amount of information on things that you have forgotten, or tactics that you may have overlooked.
14 Digital Marketing Podcasts That Deserve Your Attention
Although he has his fair share of contrarians, there's no doubt that Neil Patel is one of the biggest names in the SEO and digital marketing world. He's worked with celebrities that have massive platforms and some of the largest corporations on the planet, so he brings a wealth of information to his podcast every single week. Neil's cohost, Eric Siu, is also well verses in this universe, so the two of them combined make for a very informative podcast.
What makes this podcast so valuable is not necessarily the brand-new information, but the concise and actionable format that it comes in. Every episode in this format is under 10 minutes, which means it's perfect to listen to when you're doing just about anything. And with almost 2000 episodes already in their catalog, there's quite a bit to listen to.
Neil and Eric don't shy away from any topic, so everything from copywriting, SEO, paid search tips, email marketing, and analytics are all discussed in their entirety. They're also up-to-date on current trends, and inform their listeners regularly when something new changes in the marketplace.
The GaryVee Audio Experience
Gary Vaynerchuk isn't so much of a marketer as much as he is a brand. His books like "Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook" have revolutionized the digital marketing space in a number of different ways. As you can tell from his listening to his podcast for even a few minutes, he puts a premium on authenticity, and has zero problem telling his unfiltered opinions about the state of the world.
While Gary V's podcasts run the gamut on marketing tips, including technical analysis and general advice, people mainly listen to them for the motivation and perspective that he brings to the industry. He takes a holistic marketing approach that involves not only the brand, but also the faces behind the brand, challenging his listeners to be successful emotionally as well as financially.
You certainly won't find the level of in-depth analysis that you might on other podcasts, but there's little doubt you'll find something that will help you in your marketing journey from every episode.
Duct Tape Marketing
The host of the Duct Tape Marketing podcast, John Jantsch, has been around for a while. He's an expert on small businesses specifically, but also has tons of tips when it comes to content marketing, authors, and even in-house marketing agencies. If you're trying to develop your own marketing agency, for example, you'll want to listen to his podcast.
Since he's covered almost every technical marketing topic under the sun in his years of being on the air, he mixes his broadcasts with stories about the customer journey, things that are truly innovative in business today, as well as how to create online communities around your brand.
Online Marketing Made Easy
Amy Porterfield doesn't have nearly the clout that people like Neil Patel do, but in the marketing world, there are few people that are more well respected. Her wealth of experience in the digital marketing universe has led her to create courses, products, and webinars that speak to all different types of marketing ideas.
In addition to her brand, she also talks about important subjects that marketers need to pay attention to, such as how to launch a product and how to find a niche for your agency to work in. This is a great podcast that is not only aimed at beginners, but also for experts that are trying to diversify their knowledge base.
Today in Digital Marketing
As mentioned above, podcasts can either be a few hours in length or incredibly short, and the latter of which is where this podcast fits into. Every weekday morning, host Tod Maffin breaks down what's happening in the marketing world in less than 10 minutes, giving the perfect opportunity to get ahead before you even walk out the door.
Just as the name describes, "Today in Digital Marketing" is a podcast that is geared around current events in the marketing world. It comes out every weekday, so you'll be hard-pressed to find a podcast that is more relevant than this.
He doesn't just look at smaller agencies and the nuances of SEO, he also takes a wide-angle look at larger companies like Facebook and LinkedIn to see what they're doing and where they're going.
Social Media Examiner
Michael Stelzner is another familiar name to many marketers. Having been in the industry since nearly the beginning, he has a unique perspective on how to approach things like social media marketing and building your business from the ground up the way it should be, instead of constantly playing catch-up.
In his weekly episodes that average around 45 minutes, Stelzner interviews leading experts and shares success stories in the world of social media that will give you ideas on how to improve your own game. He also sprinkles a variety of different skills and tactics that he's learned from his own work that will make you a better social media coordinator overall.
The Business of Digital
If one host is great, then two is even better. That's precisely what takes place in the Business of Digital podcast, where Mat Siltala and Dave Rohrer talk about everything that has to do with digital marketing, from SEO to analytics, social media, and even blogging.
They're not even afraid to get more in depth in technical matters, such as why your website needs to have a search bar, as well as subjects relating to time management and efficiency. And if two hosts aren't enough, they also interview experts from the field on a regular basis as well.
The podcast is published every week, and usually runs for about 20 to 40 minutes per episode, and gives expert advice on how to reach your target audience and turn them into raving fans.
One of the trickiest parts of running a digital marketing agency is managing the community around it. From social media to forums to even handling a growing email list, knowing how to interact with your customers on an everyday basis can be a challenge.
That's why Erin Jones and Carrie Hill started the Community Karma podcast. Their focus (and expertise) is about branding, and how you can use the community specifically to grow that brand. The episode styles run the gamut from B2B collaborations to influencer marketing (and everything in between), along with a few doses of case studies and interviews mixed in for good measure.
If you've had a hard time creating a community around your brand, you'll really benefit from the knowledge and tactics from this podcast.
Marketing Over Coffee
Most of the names that are on this list, or the agencies that back then, are figures that are somewhat recognizable inside the marketing world. Two that do not ring a bell, most likely, are John Wall and Christopher Penn, the cohosts of Marketing Over Coffee. That's most likely because they're not digital marketing "experts," at least in the traditional sense — they’re coffee shop owners.
The Marketing Over Coffee podcast is primarily an interview-based, weekly show that runs about 20 minutes. It's recorded inside an actual coffee shop every single week, and talks to thought leaders such as Seth Godin and Simon Sinek. They even have a Q&A session, so if you want to ask them questions that they'll answer on their show, you can submit them ahead of time.
Call To Action
Getting a little bit more niche than the other ones, the Call to Action podcast is a weekly podcast put on by the people at Unbounce. In less than 30 minutes, they give highly actionable advice and tactics that they’ve gleaned from industry experts, as well as their own experience in the workplace.
The show isn't currently filming right now, but there's still a lot of episodes that are in their playlist that are virtually timeless.
Moving in the world of social media, the people over at Digitalmarketer.com have an excellent podcast that is published every week called Perpetual Traffic. Though their primary focus is on maximizing an organic community building process and generating conversions from your social media profiles, they also discuss paid advertisements from time to time.
The main benefit to listening to a podcast that is devoted to social media is the fact that you can hear about a variety of burgeoning platforms before they start to become mainstream. Snapchat advertising isn't nearly as big of a deal as it could be, for example, yet Perpetual Traffic has discussed it several times over the course of their show, which means their listeners are ahead of the game.
If you want to be on the cutting edge of social media, make sure that you hit subscribe to perpetual traffic
The Science of Social Media
Buffer.com is one of the biggest names in social media schedulers, and every week they put out a podcast to thousands of listeners that gobble up their tips on strategy, content creation, and timing. In case you're really interested in this world, they also discuss the behind the scenes look of social media managers and what it takes to run a top social page.
Since so much of social media can be subjective, they also feature questions from the audience, answering them live on the podcast. If you ever wondered how to implement a successful social media strategy, or are creating a brand-new one for your page, the Science of Social Media is one to look at.
The Hustle and Flowchart Podcast
Most marketers understand the value of having processes in place that can make your life easier. The two hosts of the Hustle and Flowchart podcast -- Matt Wolfe and Joe Fier -- talk about precisely that in their twice weekly podcast, along with an expert that they bring in.
Not only do they discuss marketing tactics, processes and automation, but they also discuss the future of all things digital marketing. Just as important, Matt and Joe talk speculate about the nature of remote work and how to maximize your true potential as a businessperson and a marketer. Efficiency is the name of the game, as these two men tear down the myths concerning brand building and go straight for the no fluff approach.
It's hard to put a list together of anything business related and not include the Harvard Business Review in some format. This podcast has been going on for nearly 15 years and historically, has featured some of the top minds not just in marketing, but business as well. Most of the guests are owners and CEOs of major companies, but also future entrepreneurs and nonprofit directors as well.
While this podcast isn’t strictly digital marketing related, there's no doubt that by listening to it, you'll find lots of tidbits that will help you approach business as a whole. They focus on the current state of business events, as well as career development from a personal standpoint and management tactics. It's a gold mine for resources from those who know better than most.
About THE AUTHOR
After working for multiple digital advertising agencies and managing hundreds of client accounts, spending millions of dollars via Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Native Ads and Direct Media Buying, I took things out on my own and started SparrowBoost. Now, my tight-knit team and I continue to get smarter and more efficient at running our own campaigns and we share our knowledge with you.Learn more about SparrowBoost