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Young, hip, educated and tech-savvy — the average podcast listener, according to Edison Research, mirrors the demographic of a lot of Merritt Group’s staff and clients.

The medium has grown in popularity year over year, with more than one-third of the population tuned in to fill up their commute, enrich their quiet time at home or even boost their at-work learning. Plus, in podcasts’ most meta moment ever, “Freakonomics” revealed there is evidence that podcasts actually improve your brain activity.

Whether they are about technology news, advertising best practices or how to be a better manager, here are a few of the podcasts Merritt Group staffers would recommend to our clients:

Ashley Howard, Account Supervisor, Security Practice

“Risky Business”

“Risky Business” is a great podcast for those in the security industry or individuals simply interested in staying on top of the most recent cyberattack. They always cover the latest cyber-related news and break it down into an easily digestible format. It’s great for staying ahead of the most recent breach and learning about the cyber landscape altogether.

Lauren Sawyer, Senior Account Executive, Government Practice

“NPR’s Up First”

“Up First” is a quick 10- to 15-minute daily podcast that publishes every morning by about 6 a.m., so it’s great for early birds like me. The podcast gives a rundown of the day’s top stories, highlighting national and international news that spans industries. It’s so easy to get bogged down in the specifics of our industry and, for me, “Up First” is a great podcast to take a step back and get a bird’s-eye view of what’s happening in the world.

Pasha Irshad, Director of Digital Marketing

“The PPC Show Podcast”

“The PPC Show” is a thirty-minute podcast from the creators of the ad reporting software solution AdStage, bringing you up-to-date news on the world of paid advertising. It not only gives an overview of the latest happenings across the full paid landscape, it also brings you the latest tips and tricks from paid marketing experts across the globe. It’s a must listen for anybody in the digital marketing arena.

Jessica Klenk, Director of California Operations

“Stuff You Should Know”

This podcast will give you insights into the random and wonderful stuff you don’t learn in school … sometimes work-related, like internships and broadcasting, sometimes not (ghost fishing?!). It’s great for expanding your brain and also for coming up with great small talk topics to impress your co-workers.

“Boss Files With Poppy Harlow”

CNN’s Poppy Harlow talks to the big dogs about how they got to the big leagues — and how they stay there. The show features business moguls, philanthropists, entrepreneurs, actors, designers and more. I love the social good lens as well!

Suzanne Block, Account Supervisor, Business Technology Group

“Manager Tools”

“Manager Tools” is a great resource on how to not only be a good manager, but how to think like one. A lot of the podcasts have extended into other areas of my professional life as well. It has taught me to be fair, keep my emotions out of management and be a leader that people actually want to follow.


A fantastic resource for Silicon Valley technology thinking, ideas, and entrepreneurs — “a16z” can get technical and in the weeds at times, but the topics are typically very engaging and offer great perspective.

Melissa Chadwick, Vice President of Content

“This American Life”

Since content is near and dear to my heart, I’m always on the lookout for great storytelling that sucks you in, makes you think and pushes you to act. It’s not an easy thing to do; listeners and readers today have short attention spans. Ira Glass has really mastered the art and what he calls the power of the anecdote. His guiding principles are something I try to keep in mind whenever I think about our clients’ content, or I put pen to paper.

What are your favorite podcasts? Contact Merritt Group today, and let’s start a conversation!

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