Improve Your Life

10 Amazing Podcasts for Bloggers (and Everyone Else)

8 Comments 03 May 2012

Podcasts and Workaholics

One trick I’ve been using as I get busier and busier is maximizing car, travel, cooking, and cleaning time. These “passive moments” are a great opportunity to be – you got it – learning. Technology is moving quickly and there is more going on in the universe than you will ever have time to begin to understand, so if you’re leaving learning to the kids in classrooms you’re just getting left behind.

In this list, I’ve included my favorites (which are mostly related to blogging and internet marketing) as well as the favorites of some of my friends, each of whom have a wide range of interests.

Why include podcasts related to things other than blogging?

Because blogging and internet marketing is just a tool to spread ideas, products, and services – to have ideas, products, and services you have to know things.

It’s like painting – you can study painting itself (the tool) but then you have to explore the world – beautiful things, light, other people, etc. if you’re going to have anything to paint.

Now, your assignment is to get them all on iTunes, and once a week or so fill up some blank cds with new episodes. Put them in your car, kitchen, and bedroom and – voila – you never have to have downtime again! (Just kidding. Sort of.)


Copyblogger Radio - Podcasts for Bloggers

1. Copyblogger Radio 

This gets to be number one because it’s, well, my favorite. Brian Clarks’ famous Copyblogger website is just as great on air. If you care about internet marketing, blogging, content creation, or having an internet presence – for the love of God, follow Copyblogger Radio. They interview Chris Brogan about his best advice for growing a website. They talk to Sonia Simone about affiliate marketing. They talk to legendary copywriter John Carlton. I’ve listened to every episode. That’s all I’m going to say about that.



Jay Baer convince and convert - Podcasts for Bloggers

2. Jay Baer’s Social Pros Podcast

I love this podcast. They focus on Jay’s specialty, social media, and profile how different companies are using social media to grow their business. I love sitting back and absorbing the case studies, figuring out how I can apply the various lessons and strategies to enhance my own web presence. Jay is really lovable, and one of my favorite people to listen to. He has an incredibly knowledgeable, yet humble, way about him – and I’m always in a better mood after listening to him.

3. NPR Podcasts

You bring up podcasts and everyone brings up the same thing: NPR. If that isn’t social proof, I don’t know what is. But I’m not complaining – they’ve definitely earned the podcast crown. My artist mom and my web-developer, heavy metal loving boyfriend both listen to NPR podcasts all day. They really do have something for everyone. So, when you’re stuck without anything to write about, or just want to learn things and keep your brain alive, this is a great place to go.


Making it with Riki Lindhome

4. The Nerdist – Making it with Riki Lindhome

Well, isn’t this just brilliant? Riki interviews people who have “made it” – comedians, actresses, writers about what it means to make it and how they got there. It’s a beautiful thing for the starving artist in all of us, and knowing that deep down, we all just want to make it.


The Nerdist - JV Club

5. The Nerdist – JV Club

This might be the MsMorphosis in me, but this is just brilliant. In this series, Janet Varnet interviews women who have done things with their lives. One of my favorite parts has to be the nerdy versus beautiful pictures featured on each podcast. You should see my worst picture next to my best picture. They aren’t the same people. Except they are, weirdly.



Best Blogging Podcasts

6. Six Pixels of Separation

Mitch Joel, president of award-winning Digital Marketing and Communications agency Twist Image, gives fantastic digital marketing strategies in these podcasts (of which there are many). Joel’s works frequently with big brands like Wal-Mart, Starbucks, Nestle, Procter and Gamble, and Unilever, and has shared the stage with has shared the stage with former President of the United States, Bill Clinton, Sir Richard Branson, Malcolm Gladwell, Anthony Robbins, Tom Peters and Dr. Phil. He has a regular column, Media Hacker, on the Huffington Post, and his first book Six Pixels of Separation is a business and marketing bestseller. So, if you’re looking from someone to learn from, this could be a very good place to start.


Marketing Over Coffee - Podcasts for Bloggers

7. Marketing Over Coffee

In this podcast, hosts John Wall and Christopher Penn actually record the show in a local coffee shop and publish the show every Thursday morning. They’ve interviewed big names like David Meerman Scott, Seth Godin, and Simon Sinek. They cover topics ranging from the technological to the traditional – social media, SEO, e-mail marketing, copywriting,  and traditional (offline) marketing. Chris Brogan called it “by FAR the best podcast on marketing that I consume in a given day. Fast, to the point, and packed with information that’s useful to me, and yet delivered in a conversational tone that makes it easier to consume and less ‘newsy.’ I’ve put elements of their podcast to work for me over the last few months and have seen results right away.”



How Was Your Week? - Podcasts for Bloggers

8. How Was Your Week with Julie Klausner

I’d never heard of this one until I put out my inquiries to friends and family to tell me their favorite podcasts for the purpose of this article, and this was one that my very smart friend, poet/novelist Nick Anderson, really recommends (and I think looks just amazing). Since I don’t want to talk out of my ass about something I haven’t listened to (but am putting on cds to put in my car as we speak, so I WILL be listening to it!) here’s how Nick describes it: “How Was Your Week is a podcast in which the cynical Julie Klausner rants about pop culture over the music of Ted Leo, interviews interesting people, and discusses photos of animals that her fans send her.” Brilliant.


Shop Talk - podcasts for bloggers

9. Shop Talk Podcast

Hosted by Chris Coyier and Dave Rupert, this live web design and development podcast about front end web design, development, and UX. Chris Coyier is the founder of CSS-Tricks, a blog about front end development, and works at SurveyMonkey, which I love both because of their name and their service, and Dave Rupert is the lead developer at Paravel, a small front end web shop in Austin, Texas.  This show is undoubtedly a great resource for anyone looking to expand and sharpen their technical skills.



Tropical MBA - Podcasts for Bloggers

10. Tropical MBA

This one was recommended by this week’s interviewee, David Krug. I wasn’t surprised to hear that this is “the only podcast he listens to,” because it’s very in line with his work/life philosophy. This top-rated iTunes podcast is all about growing a start-up from your laptop while you explore the world. If the location-independent entrepreneurial path is exciting to you, this is a fantastic resource to help.


Improve Your Life

Think for Yourself or You Might as Well Be a Monkey In a Cage

1 Comment 05 April 2012

Editor’s Note: This a guest post by my good friend who never ceases to amaze me, Stephen McCumber

This all started as a Facebook post.

I tend to draw intersecting lines between things that don’t normally intersect. For instance, the sister of one of my exes had me listen to a Lady Gaga song, and it immediately made me think of an older Eddie Murphy song about putting stuff in your butt. Maybe it’s the way my brain works but you say banana I think theoretical physics. You say liquid I think Bose-Einstein condensates. Jen posts a quote on Facebook and I immediately think “that reminds me of sociological experimentation.”

Steve Pavlina facebook status  Continue Reading

Improve Your Life

Do Something With Your Life – You Unique, Shiny, Lazy-Ass Snowflake

9 Comments 07 March 2012

Americans are big believers in individualism. You, my friend, are one unique-ass shiny snowflake. There never has, nor will there ever be, anyone like you. You can wave your unique pride flag high in the air and seek comfort in that. Seriously. And the truth is, for the most part, most of us believe it. We sing in the shower with belting pride, even though our mom may or may not have dropped the hint once or twice in our childhood that when we sing it sounds like a cat stuck in a bag being thrown up against a wall. That doesn’t faze us. We’re still astounded when “he never calls again” because we are a one-in-a-million catch and he’s a downright moron for passing up the chance of a lifetime to have the pleasure of our company. Further, how about that economy? How can there be no jobs? How can there be no jobs for a unique, brilliant, shiny little snowflake like myself? I deserve 6 figures! I went to college! I want benefits and paid vacations and disposable income!

But then, you talk to someone about starting a blog, and it’s a whole new ballgame. Suddenly, they start to crack. They’re into it for about 10 minutes. Anyone I’ve ever talked to about starting a blog has been someone that I talk to, in life or online, and I only talk to people that I find interesting. I know people that are sensitive, people that are charming, people that are downright hilarious, and people that know more about politics in their left eyelash than I’ve known in my entire lifetime.

So, I encourage these people to start a blog. I would love to be able to chuckle to the hilarious ones in the morning while I check my google reader. I would love to learn a thing or two about politics from my worldly friends. I know these people are amazing, so I think they should get out there and be a part of a worldwide conversation. I want them to get off their butts and be the amazing unique individuals that they are with me, slap it on a WordPress blog, and share it with the damn world.

For about 10 minutes, they’re into this. They know what I’m talking about (since they are hilarious and worldly and they know it) but then, then the fear starts to set in. “Ehhhh, what if I’m not a good writer?” “I don’t really have anything to say.” “What if I suck and am embarrassed?”

What just happened!?! I thought you were the unique shiny snowflake that demands euphoria! I thought you were the up-and-coming Julia Roberts! I thought you were Elle Macpherson’s doppleganger with a voice like a thousand singing angels?? What happened to all that confidence??

And there’s that damn ego again. It’s that same ego that makes you think you’re one in a million that makes you terrified of anyone thinking a single mean thought about you. Unfortunately, I don’t know if you’re one in a million. I don’t even know if you’re one in all of Arkansas. But I do know that that doesn’t mean you aren’t incredibly spectacular with something great to share with the world.

So here’s my message for you and your excuses-filled brain:

1. Get over the fact that people might say mean things about you.

“Those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” – Dr. Seuss

People say mean things about me all the time. They don’t tell me all the time, but I know they’re saying it. I know people snicker about me behind my back, and I’m sure I’ve been made fun of before. Maybe many times before. But guess what? I choose to not care. I can either recede into a hole so that no one has a mean thing to say about me, or I can live and be myself and tell my one-in-a-million heart and passion and energy that anything mean they say  they are saying because they’re jealous, because I’m happy. And I know who I am. And I’m not afraid to be who I am. And I’m lucky for that. And you know what? I don’t have any time to make fun of them, because I’m too busy having fun and being myself and enjoying my one little life on this earth. So there, problem solved, stop stressing.

2. Get over the fact that you will never be “the best.”

As my favorite person in the world Ellen Degeneres once tweeted (I can’t find the exact tweet, but you get the gist) – whenever you find something that you’re good at, just know a 10 year old in China can do it better than you.

Totally true.

But it isn’t about being the best. I can sell my marketing, blogging, and copywriting skills because I spend more time working on these things in a month than most people will spend in their entire lives. So guess what? They can either take a couple months off work and learn the things I know, or they can pay me to do it for them and get back to their business, lives, and particular realms of expertise. Similarly, you have insights and experiences that other people don’t have. You don’t have to be the best in the world, but if you know more about cooking than I do, I’d sure as hell love some good dinner recipes. I don’t want you to be a 5 star chef because I won’t be able to keep up -  I just want someone a little better than me that can help take my cooking to the next level. If you’re REALLY good at cooking, then screw helping me and make a site targeted to other advanced cooks. Whatever you level is, there will be a market looking to learn from you. If you spend more time cooking in a month then I’ll spend in my whole life, you better bet I’ll buy a cookbook from you, because I’m sure it rocks. You have skills in something, so help a sister out and share them.

3. Get over the fact that you “have nothing to say”

First of all, if you legitimately have nothing to say then you need to be first person to start a blog. You need to have some motivation and incentive to get off your butt and find some things that you’re passionate about and can talk about and contribute to the world. If you literally have nothing to say, you must be the world’s most boring person. If I am ever stuck at a dinner party trying to make conversation with you, I will probably say I’m going to the bathroom and sneak into the kitchen to take shots. Then, I will probably puke on you at dinner. So, long story short, read some books, cook some meals, have some adventures, and find SOMETHING worth talking about, or there’s a good chance I will puke on you  at dinner one day.

That said, if you do have enough to talk about to make it through a dinner party, then just figure out what it is you could talk about in writing, on the internet. Take some pictures of meals you make and rate different recipes. Put up anonymous conversations you have with weird coworkers. Share tips on poker. Tell us about coping with married life. Share. Because sharing encourages you to learn more, allows you to attract like-minded people, and forces you to articulate the things that you are used to just drunkenly blabbing about when no one else is really in the mood to listen. This way, you can start soberly blabbing to people that care, and it will help you grow. It’s a beautiful thing.


So, long story short, start a blog. If you’re short on time, then do your day job and spend the money to have someone like me build it for you. Either way, it’s an important hobby to have, that hobby of being an interesting human being that contributes something to the world. It’s important to learn how to have the confidence to put yourself out there, and the humility to not take it all too seriously. You are a unique shiny snowflake, now go kick some ass.


Jen, MsMorphosis herself, writes with a wisdom that belies her age (astoundingly only 25) and speaks from a place that seems like you’re listening to your big sister, or a dear friend that you’ve never met. For me, the connection was instant, and the material has always been almost so personally intertwined and touching that I feel like the singer-story-teller in the song, ‘Killing Me Softly.’ — Sheanna Caban