Businesses are constantly looking for the best ways of being able to evolve and grow, and to bring their customers closer. These days there are many elements that companies need to consider when it comes to improving connectivity and appealing to the public.
A sense of community is really important for success in the business world, and this is something Clubhouse plays a big role in.
Created in 2020, Clubhouse is a unique take on social networking platforms, and business owners are looking at ways of being able to utilise Clubhouse to bring a greater community feel, and to help promote a sense of collectivism within the business. Influencer marketing is, of course, paramount, and many influencers have already spotted the potential of Clubhouse. Bringing in content creators to help keep your business connected to Clubhouse has many benefits, and the exclusive nature of the app, coupled with the personalities who use it, make this a must review option for any modern brand. More than 180 organizations have joined Clubhouse, showing the growing popularity and importance of the platform. Let’s find out more about Clubhouse, and how it can help with business growth and community building for your brand.
What is Clubhouse?
Clubhouse is a new, exciting, and highly exclusive social networking app that, though still in the beta phase, is gaining a lot of traction and popularity, enjoying more than 10 million downloads in February 2021 alone. Many people are starting to become aware of the app, as well as the key benefits that this new platform can provide for companies everywhere. Conservatively valued at around $1 billion, the iPhone app is a voice-only platform focused on audio marketing. Clubhouse brings together some of the best and most influential business minds all in one place at the same time. The great thing about Clubhouse is the fact that it allows people a seat at the table, and, as a voice-only app, it connects people via audio interaction.
The idea behind Clubhouse is to give people access to the advice, insights, anecdotes, and innovations of some of the most successful people in the world. The app is filled with virtual rooms that users can enter and listen to people and experts chatting. A good way to describe Clubhouse is part conference and part podcast, which shows the scope this app has for engagement. Users can pick rooms where there are topics that are of interest to them, and this is one of the things that makes Clubhouse such a great concept for modern business to test out. So, how can Clubhouse positively impact businesses, and how can influencer marketing play a role in helping bring this innovation to your doorstep?
Why it Matters for Business
Clubhouse can be used to develop a sense of community and belonging. For starters, it is a great way of connecting you to professionals and successful entrepreneurs you would not otherwise have access to under normal circumstances. Getting advice and wisdom from titans of the business world, many of whom are experts in their field, can have a tremendous impact on your company and on your individual approach as an entrepreneur, business or brand leader. Such global heavyweights as Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, and Oprah are active on the platform, and regularly engage in rooms, discussing their careers and future plans. For instance, on January 31st 2021, Musk Tweeted that he was going to be hosting live on Clubhouse that night, allowing people to tune in and listen.
In addition to the advice and networking opportunities Clubhouse provides there are other benefits that shouldn’t be overlooked. For example, exclusivity is a big part of the appeal with Clubhouse, and this continues to attract people looking to be part of the inner circle. The only way to join the app is to be invited by an existing member. If you can link up with Clubhouse or manage to secure an invite, you’re going to be part of an exclusive club, and this is going to give your business prestige and boost your positive reputation.
If you are an expert in a particular area, you may well be able to generate extra revenue from Clubhouse. Some people have taken to hosting rooms and coaching people as a great way of being able to generate additional income, as well as making a name for yourself and your business. This is another option that will help when using Clubhouse to enhance your business community and authority.
How Can Influencers Connect Us?
Influencers can have huge benefits for modern businesses, and influencer marketing is arguably the most powerful right now. In fact, according to Influencer Marketing Hub, in 2021 it’s believed that influencer marketing will grow to be worth close to $14 billion! Content creators and digital talents are essential for the digital presence and authority a business holds, as well as the way people assess the business. Clubhouse is full of B2C creators, as well as B2B influencers who are all experts in their fields, such as Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Suitainability, Fitness and even Science. But, in addition to the renowned experts on Clubhouse, it is important to think about how social media influencers can help connect us to Clubhouse.
Of course, many influencers will be looking for ways of being able to get involved with the app, and those who are will be able to support brands in a number of new ways. They can generate discussions about your business or industry, which leads to higher exposure and can bring your business to the attention of the right audience, essential for success and growth of your authority. Through the power of influencers, businesses can host rooms, or “clubs,” to educate and inform their target audiences and improve brand awareness. Digital Talents and content creators will play an integral role in driving traffic to these rooms and helping secure an engaged audience.
Influencers are essential for your business, and, through Clubhouse, they can take steps that will help you to build a loyal community as a business owner.
Community at the Heart of Clubhouse
Business community is an integral part of the ethos of the Clubhouse platform. The entire app is built on a foundation of social audio, and this has helped develop a virtual community that has thrived. Being able to develop a strong community as a business is integral to keeping customers happy and engaged with your company. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, more people have begun to yearn for a sense of community and belonging, and many seek to find this with businesses. Clubhouse can help with this, as it allows people to connect with businesses and entrepreneurs, adding a social dynamic to real-time conversations. Think of it as similar to a TED Talk, with an added Q&A and interaction function.
As we touched on earlier, influencers can help you build this community on Clubhouse by driving traffic and connecting with the right audiences. Developing and engaging a strong following in these rooms is the key, and this means a focus on quality and staying ‘on message.’ Audio is a very intimate medium, and this requires finesse from businesses in order to enhance the experience and strengthen your connection with customers. Social audio is a new concept in the social media world, and one that businesses can harness to really cement their brand awareness.
There are several ways of using Clubhouse to be able to develop and enhance this feeling of community and engagement. Create an after-party relevant to your industry where people can converse about a variety of topics. An after-hours podcast for your followers would really help with engagement and strengthening the community feel you’re trying to create.
Clubhouse Brand Strategies
Brands are partnering with influencers already to start their Clubhouse journey and generate conversation and dialog. American designer, entrepreneur, and Louis Vuitton artistic director Virgil Abloh detailed the benefits of Clubhouse for the fashion industry when he stated:
And it’s not just the fashion and beauty industry that have seen the benefits. Pernod Ricard partnered with digital media marketing strategist, and acclaimed global content creator, Karen Civil for Black History Month, to celebrate black female entrepreneurs. In February of this year they collectively hosted a weekly Clubhouse room with the purpose to build community, brand awareness, and generate meaningful conversation. These weekly Clubhouse conversations included guest influencers such as Jennifer Lyle (CEO of Lush), Ronne Brown (founder of Girl CEO), and New Orleans social media sensation and beauty brand guru Supa Cent, all leaders and experts in their field.
Restaurant Brands International (RBI), parent company of Burger King, were also quick to get in on the action, and hosted a room named ‘Open Kitchen.’ The purpose of this room was to host chats that would connect the brands’ marketing experts with anyone who had an interest in marketing. RBI claimed Clubhouse would help them generate brand awareness and drive buzz around their restaurant chains. Of course, another benefit was to establish their experts as thought leaders in the industry. Clubhouse presents an opportunity for brands to convey their industry authority and relate engage with topics that are important to their customers, and use this to create a close-knit community.
What to Expect from Clubhouse in the Future
Knowing what the future holds for an app like Clubhouse is hard to put a finger on just yet, but there are new trends expected to shape its future. The first of these is artificial intelligence (AI), specifically, conversational AI. According to stats published on Comm100, 70% of Millennials reporting positive chatbot experiences, it will only be a matter of time before AI chatbots become commonplace on Clubhouse. Another expected future trend is live music, which will be integral to engagement and strengthening community.
Something else to expect from Clubhouse in the future is the monetization of the platform for hosts, and this is something that is in the works at the moment via the Creator Grant Program. Clubhouse is taking an open-ended approach to monetization, with several avenues to be explored in a bid to find the best option. Talk of a Patreon-type system (a membership platform that allows content creators to run subscription services) built into the platform is also something that has been talked about. Co-founders Bruce Davison and Rohan Seth discussed plans to monetize creator participation on Clubhouse, saying “Over the next few months, we plan to launch our first tests to allow creators to get paid directly—through features like tipping, tickets or subscriptions.”
Furthermore, the issue of data security is one that Clubhouse will need to address in the future. The platform has already experienced one data spillage, when an unidentified user streamed live content from rooms to their website. Data security is essential for any new business, and Clubhouse is still a very new app that will need to define and communicate to their audience how they will ensure their data is safely managed.
Clubhouse is also testing an exclusive Creator Pilot Program, with over 40 influencers, known as ‘moderators.’ This special program contains perks such as regular meetings with one of the founders of Clubhouse, as well as early access to essential tools designed to improve their brands, such as graphical user interface, text, and applications. The aim is to allow influencers who don’t have large social media followings to still be able to generate big audiences on Clubhouse.
Rivals to Clubhouse
There are rivals to Clubhouse on the market, but they don’t share all of the appealing elements Clubhouse has. Currently, Zoom and Facebook have virtual calling options and allow you to access rooms with a focus on audio communication and socializing, but they don’t have a variety of rooms for people to visit. Perhaps the closest alternative on the market to what Clubhouse offers comes courtesy of Twitter and Instagram. Twitter’s Spaces feature went live in December 2020, allowing people to connect with followers in an audio setting. Instagram has recently launched its Live Rooms feature, allowing broadcasts with up to four people (Host and three guests) as an Instagram Live feature.
Companies like Twitter and Facebook have already realized the potential of an app like Clubhouse, and it won’t be long before others follow suit. Companies that are leaders in their field are always looking at innovation and ways of staying ahead of the curve, and there is no doubt we will see apps of a similar ilk to Clubhouse in the not too distant future.
Key Takeaways and Recommendations
- Clubhouse is growing in popularity and prestige, and the user base will keep increasing. Be sure to evaluate how pertinent the platform is for your brand category and industry, and test out this new platform.
- The app enhances the benefits of social audio, and allows businesses to take advantage of a new and intimate form of social media.
- Brands can use influencer marketing to generate discussion about their business and bring it to the attention of the right audience. Be sure to identify how to appropriately empower the trust factor from content creators, to reach your audience and leverage from the intimacy factor the app offers.
- The exclusive nature of Clubhouse, coupled with the community-based ethos makes this a useful platform for businesses looking to develop their authority, and engage a strong following of the right audience.
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