Though podcasting has been around since the early '00s, 2016 was arguably the year of the podcast, with so many great ones hitting high points, with more and more terrific luminaries joining the medium.

For those of us looking to bring our ability to succeed to an entire other level, here are the podcasts you need to be a better marketer in 2017:

#1: Marketing Over Coffee

The podcast that's "at the intersection of marketing and technology," Marketing Over Coffee is a wonderfully 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. Penn is one of the best in the game when it comes to marketing analytics, and Wall is one of the best interviewers around; all together, they're the perfect combo for any serious marketing geek.

#2: PNR: This Old Marketing

The name This Old Marketing refers to the fact that content marketing has actually been around for ages, even though it's considered to be quite en vogue right now. 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.

#3: Duct Tape Marketing

If you're a marketer, odds are that the Duct Tape Marketing website has been an invaluable resource to you at some point, and may have even saved your skin once or twice. For those who can't get enough, DTM's 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.

#4: VB Engage

If you're going to have a podcast featuring co-hosts, it's crucial that they bring both knowledge and personality to the table. That's definitely the case with Stewart Rogers and Travis Wright, both marketing technology experts in their own rights, and co-hosts of this podcast from VentureBeat. Rogers and Wright are quirky as heck, and you'll love them for it. VB Engage is the perfect mix of interviews with experts like reddit's Alexis Ohanian, entrepreneur Peter Shankman, and media personality Veronica Belmont, as well as discussions of today's top marketing topics, from chatbots to CRM to Snapchat's Spectacles.

#5: Six Pixels of Separation

Mitch Joel's long-running podcast has been a staple of mine for years. Joel typically has the sharpest guests imaginable, from trend forecaster Rohit Bhargava to ad legend Alex Bogusky to Good Life Project founder Jonathan Fields. These are hefty episodes, typically an hour or so in length, which is a great way to really go in-depth with some of the top digital marketing and thought leaders around.

#6: Mad Marketing

Host Marcus Sheridan describes the Mad Marketing podcast as "off the cuff, extremely personal, and definitively real," and that is exactly why we love it. Sheridan's exceptionally personable, conversational approach helps provide a look behind the curtain, an examination of the kind of challenges and contradictions faced by real marketing professionals in their daily life. Mad Marketing is more reflective than analytical: whereas many of the other podcasts on this list center on reviews or interviews, Sheridan focuses on his own thoughts and experiences, which breaks through some of the abstractions you might find when listening to a show guest's experiences.

#7: 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. But as the name suggests, Social Pros skips the hip startups, focusing instead on, well, the "pros." 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). But Baer is no passive host - he always has interesting and insightful feedback on the themes and ideas explored during the episode.

#8: Marketing Optimization

Marketing and conversion optimization are very tricky topics to talk about. They're less subjective, less personal, and less forgiving than other marketing issues, because success in this area is very difficult to fake. That's not to mention that success in this area is also very hard to, you know, achieve! But host Alex Harris is not afraid to get into the nitty gritty and discuss just how to approach this most finicky and difficult aspect of marketing, where the field separates and you see just exactly who knows what they're doing. This isn't about 'Likes' and 'Follows' - this is about conversions, this is about ROI.

#9: Social Business Engine

When it comes to social media, and even digital marketing, a lot of podcasts are aimed at the mid-level staff. But Bernie Borges and Social Business Engine is position-agnostic, and provides actionable advice that's useful for everyone from the social media intern all the way up to the C-suite. Guests are influential thought leaders from strong brands, showcasing a wide variety of relevant and specific ideas that help to add to a holistic picture of the industry, with all of its moving parts. For a show that touts itself as educational, Social Business Engine is anything but academic, and its listeners will certainly get great advice on the one thing they're looking for: results.

Published on: Dec 15, 2016