If you’re a podcast enthusiast, I don’t have to tell you that podcast discovery is a challenge. And if you don’t believe me, perhaps this chart showing the explosion of podcast programming will convince you:
The boom in new podcasts has created a challenge when it comes to finding new content—a good problem to have, I'll admit. Podcast players like Apple or Spotify offer charts and lists of popular programs. Word of mouth recommendations from friends or online forums are another great way to find shows. I've also written on the topic in a past article, "Resources for Discovering New Podcasts." And while there are numerous ways to find new podcasts, this article focuses on a favorite: the podcast newsletter.
Email newsletters are one great way to keep abreast of interesting new podcasts. Most are free and will deliver a list of curated picks weekly straight to your inbox (some with zero to minimal advertising). Readers of this blog know that I post curated selections in my weekly link roundup as well as in my newsletter. However, I sometimes run out of ideas and when this happens I turn to word-of-mouth recommendations, my RSS feeds, and newsletters for inspiration.
What follows is a list of podcast newsletters that I find helpful for discovering new podcast content. I’ve split the listing into two sections*:
- Podcast newsletters for listeners. These publications gear their content towards people who consume podcasts and are looking for interesting new programming from a wide range of topics.
- Podcast industry newsletters. These publications are intended for people who work and follow the podcasting industry: creators, advertisers, and the like. I’ve included a handful of handpicked industry newsletters that are of interest to listeners (there are far more of these out there than listed in this article).
Note: Paid newsletters are indicated with a "$" symbol. All other publications offer free subscriptions.
Podcast Newsletters for Listeners
|1.5X Speed||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Nick Quah highlights 6-8 podcasts.|
|Bello Collective||Subscribe | Archive||Fortnightly. Large editorial staff offers eclectic picks.|
|Earbuds Collective||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Guest curators recommend 5 shows based on a common theme.|
|Fiction Podcast Weekly||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Focus on audio drama and storytelling.|
|Find that Pod||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Each issue recommends five podcasts.|
|Great British Podcasts||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Recommendations, interviews, and new releases.|
|Hurt Your Brain||Subscribe | Archive||Fortnightly. Curated podcasts plus articles and videos.|
|The Listener ($)||Subscribe | Archive||Daily. Paid subscription. 3 recommendations per post.|
|Pod People||Subscribe | Archive||Monthly. Dozens of recs alongside podcast news.|
|Podcast Brunch Club||Subscribe | Archive||Monthly. Issue feature a theme to promote thoughtful discussion.|
|Podcast Delivery||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Two podcasts per issue: a spotlight and a bonus.|
|Podcast Gumbo||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Each issue recommends 3 podcasts|
|Podcast the Newsletter||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Recommendations, news, interviews with creators and enthusiasts.|
|Podcast Review||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. 5 podcast recommendations per issue.|
|Podyssey Newsletter||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Recommendations from the Podyssey community.|
|This Week in Podcasts||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Recommendations, lists notable interviews and new releases.|
Podcast Industry Newsletters
|Hot Pod||Subscribe | Archive||Several times per week depending on the news cycle.|
|Hot Pod Insider ($)||Subscribe | Archive||Biweekly. Nick Quah's paid subscription newsletter.|
|Inside Podcasting||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. News, trends, podcast events.|
|Pacific Content Newsletter||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. Industry events, trends and client podcasts.|
|PodMov Daily||Subscribe | Archive||Daily. Industry advocacy and tips for creators.|
|Podcast Perspectives||Subscribe | Archive||Weekly. News and trends in the industry.|
|Podnews||Subscribe | Archive||Daily. Podcast business news, job listings, events and more.|
My Favorite Newsletter
If I had to pick a single newsletter from the listing above, I'd have to go with Michael Yessis' "This Week in Podcasts"—I've discovered so many great programs from this publication. It's definitely my go-to. But with so many high-quality free publications to choose from, nothing's stopping you from subscribing to all of them. And if the thought of your email inbox overrun with too many subscriptions is unbearable, I offer three remedies:
- Create an email address only for newsletter subscriptions (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org or something similar) and use that single-purpose email for all your newsletters.
- Use an RSS reader that supports newsletter subscriptions like Feedly or Inoreader.
- Bookmark the newsletter archive page and check the archive periodically for the current issue and latest recommendations.
I hope the above helps you find some interesting new podcasts. If I’m missing your favorite podcast newsletter, please let me know.
* A word on the selection criteria: I’ve been careful, for the most part, to include only active newsletters that adhere to a regular publication schedule or frequent publication. There are other excellent newsletters that have been omitted because they are either (a) defunct or (b) too sporadic with their publication schedule.