Best Podcasts of 2016


As a marketer people may think that I would gain inspiration from business podcasts and publications, and they would be correct to some extent, but is it fuel for the creative and analytical mind?

What I have generally found is that business/marketing related reading is very good for improving your overall technical skills…but it’s not necessarily inspirational for creative thinking. 

Let me be very clear that ‘creative thinking’ is not limited to designers or people involved in the arts. Creative and abstract thinking can be used in every facet of life across every industry simply because of the fact that we do not live in a universe of absolutes (the astrophysicists can jump in at this point). 

What am I going on about and what is my point? 

Well, it’s this, I am amazed at where I gain my inspiration from and what influences me and I have found that being as open as possible fuels my inner creative self. 

As a marketer it is important for me to understand culture and the world we live in. One short-cut that I have found to be effective to better understanding culture is to listen to podcasts (this has also has helped me with professional problem solving as well).

My advice is to follow podcasts that completely engage you based on your own personal interests simply because as anything that captivates you is bound to inspire you and fuel your inner creative self! 

The content is one part that inspires me, but the way the podcasts are produced and how the content is delivered also inspires me as a marketer as I am always looking for ways to better engage an audience! 

The podcasts listed below help to fuel my inspiration. They are a mix of science, history, sport, business, crime, storytelling, music and culture.

The Infinite Monkey Cage 

The Infinite Monkey Cage is a hugely successful, award winning science discussion show from the BBC. It combines hard facts, softer theories and bold deviations into comedy. Now in it’s 12th series, it has asked: what is death, what happened before the big bang, is philosophy dead, and are pandas overrated?


This podcast is new and each season investigates the culture of crime in a different American city. First up: Providence, Rhode Island, where organised crime and corruption infected every aspect of public life. This is a story of alliances and betrayals, of heists and stings, of crooked cops and honest mobsters — a story where it’s hard to tell the good guys from the bad guys.


A new show about how big stories we thought were over were actually the beginning of something else.  


The dunk that launched a sneaker war. The first woman to throw down. These and more are the stories of ESPN's podcast mini-series. 

99% Invisible

Ever wonder how inflatable men came to be regular fixtures at used car lots? Curious about the origin of the fortune cookie? Want to know why Sigmund Freud opted for a couch over an armchair?

99% Invisible is about all the thought that goes into the things we don’t think about — the unnoticed architecture and design that shape our world.

Science Vs

Science Vs takes on fads, trends, and the opinionated mob to find out what’s fact, what’s not, and what’s somewhere in between. This season, we tackle organic food, attachment parenting, gun control, fracking, and more. Hosted by Wendy Zukerman.

Startup Podcast

StartUp is a podcast about what it’s really like to get a business off the ground. The first season is about Gimlet media, the guys whom I follow all of their podcasts and how they got their business off the ground. The most recent season follows the controversial American Apparel founder Doc Charney. 


Maybe you’ve laid awake imagining how it could have been, how it might yet be, but the moment to act was never right. Well, the moment is here and the podcast making it happen is Heavyweight.

Don’t Look Back

A music podcast with Caz Tran that explores how music soundtracks, punctuates and permeates our life. An intimate look at how a single song can express who we are, what we're going though and where we're heading. 

Each week a special guest talks about a pivotal moment in their life and the music that accompanied it. Through these stories we'll learn how music allows us to navigate life's twists and turns.

Revisionist History

Revisionist History, is a new podcast from Malcolm Gladwell and Panoply Media. Each week for 10 weeks, Revisionist History will go back and reinterpret something from the past: an event, a person, an idea. Something overlooked. Something misunderstood…because sometimes the past deserves a second chance. 

Here’s The Thing with Alec Baldwin

Here’s The Thing is a series of intimate and honest conversations hosted by Alec Baldwin.  Alec talks with artists, policy makers and performers – to hear their stories, what inspires their creations, what decisions changed their careers, and what relationships influenced their work.  

The Minimalists Podcast 

Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus discuss living a meaningful life with less. 

Surprisingly Awesome

Lots of things in the world seem ordinary. But when you dig deeper, it turns out, they’re fascinating. Surprisingly Awesome tells those stories.


Criminal is a podcast about crime. Stories of people who've done wrong, been wronged, or gotten caught somewhere in the middle. 

Reply All

Reply All is an American podcast from Gimlet Media, hosted by PJ Vogt and Alex Goldman. It features stories about how people shape the internet, and how the internet shapes people. Vogt and Goldman previously hosted the technology and culture podcast TLDR for WNYC. 

This American Life

A snippet from the guys at This American Life: “We’re not a news show or a talk show or a call-in show. We're not really formatted like other radio shows at all. Instead, we do these stories that are like movies for radio. There are people in dramatic situations. Things happen to them. There are funny moments and emotional moments and—hopefully—moments where the people in the story say interesting, surprising things about it all. It has to be surprising. It has to be fun.”


A snippet from the guys at Serial: “Serial tells one story—a true story—over the course of a season. Each season, we follow a plot and characters wherever they take us. We won’t know what happens at the end until we get there, not long before you get there with us. Each week we bring you the next chapter in the story, so it's important to listen to the episodes in order.”

What podcasts do you think are awesome? What inspires you? Get in touch, I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Article by Simon TokicSimon has a few passions including basketball, music and surfing, however, most of his time is spent as a self proclaimed marketing geek applying fundamental marketing principles in strategic and creative ways. Prior to running Sydney marketing agency Mind Methods, Simon worked on leading brands including Sony Pictures, Universal Pictures, Glad, Chux, Armor All, Clorox, Barbeques Galore, Anglicare and more