11 Unique Spotify Podcasts for Entrepreneurs
Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox
With more people looking for binge-worthy media to take their minds off the state of, well, everything, the former First Lady’s podcast is the kind of feel-good, comforting thing many are looking for. We get to listen to her banter with her husband, former President Barack Obama, and we can relate as we hear her confess how the pandemic, race relations and the current political strife have left her struggling with low-grade depression.
Obama’s podcast is part of Spotify’s aggressive expansion into spoken audio streaming, and this trend looks like it will continue to increase for the foreseeable future. As entrepreneurs, it behooves us to take note: Spoken audio is hotter than ever. Listeners are gobbling up content like never before, and for good reason. Podcasts feel intimate, relatable and are perfect for anyone looking to delve into topics without having to set aside time to read or watch videos.
So, if you’re an entrepreneur looking for some new audio offerings, here are 11 of the most unique and interesting Spotify podcasts for anyone wanting to expand their listening library.
1. Reply All
This long-running series began as an exploration of the internet and technology, but it covers so much more. Reply All has become known for its consistent excellence in tackling just about everything – often with the goal of trying to get to the bottom of an unexplainable internet phenomenon.
It takes on many of the annoyances and troubles of the modern age, and episodes can vary between serious investigative journalism and lighthearted discussions. Through the show's tech-support hotline, hosts PJ Vogt and Alex Goldman examine memes, connected pop culture, scammers and the extent to which social media is spying on you.
As the host of one of the most popular podcasts in the world, Joe Rogan has become a generational voice for “regular guys.” Rogan, a comedian, actor and mixed martial arts commentator, draws an eclectic collection of guests to his podcast, everyone from Oxford scholars and MIT bioengineers to culture drivers such as the marketing entrepreneur Hotep Jesus and the rapper turned radio host Charlamagne tha God.
His interview last fall with Elon Musk has been viewed more than 24 million times on YouTube, and his YouTube channel, PowerfulJRE, has 6 million subscribers. The Joe Rogan Experience, which currently has more than 1,500 episodes, will soon become a Spotify exclusive.
Each episode features the stories of business-savvy women who battled sexism all the way to the top, and the overall impact is both thought provoking and inspiring. Learn the art of branding through Coco Chanel, the never-say-die story behind Estée Lauder and Julia Child’s creative thinking in the face of naysayers.
Each of its 12 episodes weaves entrepreneurial stories with business principles, showing how each woman was ultimately able to find success. The podcast is chock-full of good advice for anyone.
Every Little Thing (ELT) is here to answer all of your burning questions. Have you ever wondered who we have to blame for pants? Why the heck do we keep plants inside? And do dogs still say "woof" in other languages?
Host Flore Lichtman is lighthearted, insightful and provocative as she seeks to answer these and other burning questions for ELT, which is a spin-off/continuation of another recently ended podcast called Surprisingly Awesome. If you’re unsure where to start, begin with the episode “When Astronauts Come Home,” which looks at what astronauts get up to when they return to earth.
Amanda de Cadenet, CEO of digital media company Girlgaze, adapted her Lifetime talk show, The Conversation, into a Spotify podcast in 2019. The Conversation podcast features one-on-one, often raw and honest discussions on relevant topics with female activists, actresses, writers, politicians, filmmakers and feminists.
De Cadenet believes that as women navigate the ever-evolving social paradigms that shape our cultural discourse, there’s a need for clear, candid and powerful voices to help society move forward. Guests have included Amber Heard, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Jameela Jamil, Olivia Wilde and Sophia Bush.
5. Killing It
This series made the list because it covers an important but often underrepresented topic: mental health in the entrepreneurial world. In the eat-or-be-eaten startup world, we’re told we should always be “killing it” at work. That means never letting up and relentlessly going after our dreams and goals. This has created an “I’m OK, you’re OK” culture that breeds stress, anxiety and burnout.
This podcast cuts through the toxic environment so pervasive in the startup world and gets to the heart of mental health issues that are often hidden from view. The series shines a light on founders who achieved success while grappling with mental health problems. Each episode features honest conversations and techniques to deal with these problems.
Whether you are familiar with the HQ Trivia app or not, this nine-episode podcast is a brilliantly told, binge-worthy story about a crazy, colossal mess of a company that was once an internet sensation. HQ Trivia was a daily trivia game in which the host asked a series of increasingly difficult multiple-choice questions. The podcast follows the start-up as it catches fires with investors, who throw obscene amounts of cash at the founders.
But while the money train seemed to be barreling along at top speed, attracting millions of players per game, the app was plagued with problems, and within two years it was all but kaput. This podcast is like a start-up soap opera, and the lessons learned are a good reminder for any entrepreneur.
If you enjoy provocative and hilarious commentary in bite-size chunks, then you need The Hottest Take in your life. The Hottest Take is Bill Simmons’ newest project, where he and his friends discuss and debate juicy hot topics to infuse laughter into your workout or morning commute. Simmons is a sportswriter, author, talk show host and the founder and CEO of the sports and pop culture website The Ringer.
Simmons and his friends debate, defend and dole out laughs along with controversial opinions on a pressing topic of the day. The podcast is great for anyone who wants to be in the know when it comes to pop culture, or if you’re looking for a break from long-form podcasts, as each episode is eight minutes or less.
8. The Pitch
If you’re a fan of ABC's hit TV series Shark Tank, this podcast is right up your alley. It features entrepreneurs in need of venture funding as they pitch to a live panel of investors. Billed as "a show where real entrepreneurs pitch to real investors − for real money," each episode aims to capture the essence of what happens when entrepreneurs pitch investors. Hosted by Josh Muccio, the idea is to put listeners in the shoes of someone who is taking a real shot at pitching would-be investors.
This podcast offers unfiltered coverage of the tricky intersection between sports, politics and culture, particularly when it comes to race and gender. Host Jemele Hill was a longtime on-air personality at ESPN and is currently a columnist for The Atlantic.
Hill brings her unique perspective to the podcast as she interviews some of the most compelling figures in news, pop culture, politics and sports. Some regular listeners say the podcast is as addictive as Krispy Kreme donuts.
This podcast series homes in on what it's really like to start a business. Entrepreneurs who are in the midst of launching their own business will relate to many of the lessons contained within these episodes as the podcast chronicles the life of a fledgling Brooklyn-based podcasting company called Gimlet Media. Host Alex Blumberg is the co-founder and CEO of Gimlet, which was acquired by Spotify in 2019.
Blumberg, who is known for his work on This American Life and Planet Money, offers a frank and honest window into how difficult it is to build your vision from the ground up. You hear him fumble and bomb at times in a way that’s both disarming and refreshing. At the very least, it’s comforting to know that everyone makes mistakes, and despite those setbacks, some will find a way to succeed.
Many of us have found ourselves wide awake in the middle of the night replaying a decision or moment we regret and imagining how it could have been, or how we might still resolve it. Heavyweight’s host Jonathan Goldstein attempts to help people confront their major life regrets and unravel personal mysteries that have left them baffled or unfulfilled.
This podcast offers a chance to hear the stories of what happens when you get a second chance to have those difficult conversations, confront heartbreak or seek resolution. It’s both funny and incredibly moving to listen in as people delve into past experiences and thorny relationships.