Clubhouse, the new fashionable social network
This hot app, which goes by the name of Clubhouse is taking social networking to its next level by letting people drop into the conversation of other people.
This part conference, part talkback, and part audio chatting app allow the people to listen to the discussions, interviews, and conversations of interesting people on a variety of interesting topics. Thus, it is just like tuning to the podcast but with certain exclusivity, and that too live.
Though the app is just a year old, it has recently received a lot of attention when Elon Musk hosted a session on this platform with Robinhood CEO regarding market dynamics.
What is Clubhouse?
The Clubhouse is a new and emerging audio chatting app that is leading social networking circles all around the world. It was launched by Rohan Seth and Paul Davison of Alpha Exploration Co. in the early Covid month of April 2020.
Though it was initially valued at a conservative $100 million in May 2020, it grew by leaps and bounds to reach the figure of $1 billion in Jan 2021. According to data, the app had around 600,000 users in December 2020 which had scaled up to a few million in Jan 2021.
The app has virtual rooms based on a variety of topics such as networking, music, talk shows, dating, performances, and political discussions. This has made it a fast favorite social network among celebrity users such as Elon Musk, Tiffany Haddish, Kevin Hart, and several others who use it for hosting virtual discussions.
It is an invite-only app that acts like an influencer digital platform where some do the talk and others get to listen to their conversation. However, as it is an invitation-only app, it cannot be downloaded from your mobile. It is currently only available in the IOS shop and only when you have an invitation.
The topics of these audio chat sessions are clearly marked in the app and can be chosen as per your interest and choices. After you have made your choice regarding the topic, the platform then displays the discussions- upcoming and those underway- regarding those same topics.
These sessions could be happening at any level- local, national or international. This means if your chosen topic shows a discussion on the same by Elon Musk, you can attend the same even while sitting in Africa.
The conversation rooms in the app are the same as conference calls with most of the people just listening on the same and a few talking. The room gets closed once the conversation gets over. They are not available for later revisiting. However, even though these conversations are not natively saved, people can live stream the same on Youtube where they can be saved.
Advantages of Clubhouse
Some of the biggest advantages of this engaging and fun app can be listed as follows:
- Interactivity: There are audio chat rooms featured on the app that can be joined and hosted freely. This makes them look like an unfiltered, interactive, and fun podcast. You can even join small rooms that offer the opportunity to get connected with interesting people from around the world.
- Networking: With a wide range of topics to choose from, the chat rooms help in bringing together people with shared interests and skills.
- Expertise: It offers an opportunity to get access to people who may otherwise be normally out of your reach.
- No DMs: One of the massive plus points of Clubhouse is that there is no extra inbox with hundreds of messages for you to sort through. Others can just invite you into a private room and that is it.
- No new content creation: Another massive advantage of joining Clubhouse is that you do not have to create any additional content for this platform. Everything happens in real-time where you either listen or speak. There are no visits to your page by the people to see what you have posted in the past or present.
Disadvantages of Clubhouse
Like every other influencer marketing application available online, Clubhouse too has its own advantages and disadvantages. Let us take a closer look at some disadvantages of this influencer technology app:
- Too Much Noise: As the popularity of the app soars, lesser will be the number of worthwhile chat rooms available on the platform. With small and interactive rooms, there is valuable information for both the participants and the hosts. However, as and when these rooms expand to include thousands, this value often gets lost in the crowd.
- Lack of credibility: There are many chat rooms available in the Clubhouse with a lot of speakers and self-proclaimed gurus. However, you have to discern the right people to take advice and follow. It is best to never take them at their face value as their online persona rarely matches reality. They could end up steering you in the wrong direction if you are not careful.
The ‘China’ Case
China is famous for its government control, censorship, and suppression. However, Clubhouse was one of the few apps that even managed to get past the ‘the Great Chinese firewall’. Initially, it was allowed into the country and fast became the rage as it allowed people to discuss all things freely.
It offered them a place where they can talk about the real ‘freedom’. It gained popularity in a very short time because it was a place that offered them a place where they could practice ‘freedom of expression’ in its true sense.
Thus people were able to engage in discussions that were otherwise blocked in places like Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Xinjiang. However, this was soon caught on by the Chinese government which proceeded to block it inside China from 8th February 2021.
How to make most of being on Clubhouse
Clubhouse as an app can be a great networking tool but it can be super destructive too. In order to make most of your time on this app, there are certain things that you can do:
- Optimize your bio: One of the first steps to ensure that you spend your time on clubhouse in a productive manner is optimizing your bio. Make sure that you fill everything up so that everyone knows about you. In fact, the more keywords you put in it, the better as everything on Clubhouse is searchable.
- Join only relevant rooms: There are many rooms available at the Clubhouse. Do not waste your time in joining a large number of rooms. When you join any room, quickly calibrate whether it will be of any use to you or not. This will help you in following the right people who are teaching the right and relevant things.
- Run your own rooms: Remember, your own room means your own rules. Set an ideal topic for demonstration your expertise in the field and helps you in interesting the ideal client. Also, since you will be the moderator, you have the freedom of asking others to join your room if you want to do so.
- Create a club: Even though rooms are great, in order to make the most of the Clubhouse, create a club. This will allow people to become members of your club that has your banner. This will give you the added bonus of allowing others to run different rooms under your club. Your Club can be a meeting point to discuss a specific topic.
Since the app is still in its beta stage, the creators of this app are planning to first complete the same in the year 2021. This will then be followed by an Android version so that the app is opened up to the whole world rather than a select few. Thus right now, you need to have a membership like a real-life yacht or country club where only an existing member can get a new member to join. It is real-world elitism that has been bundled into a virtual platform.
The rapid growth of Clubhouse has made people talk. The invite-only experience of the app allows people sharing similar interest areas and ideas to gather together for discussions and talks. They can join the virtual rooms, listen to similar minded people and can also participate as a speaker themselves.
One of the best things about Clubhouse is that you do not need any camera or professional setup for participating. It is an audio-only app where your voice will do the trick. It is this voice that further helps in making business connections and telling your story in your own words.
This platform is a great place for crowdsourcing new content as well as exploring yourself in completely new areas.
Thus, in essence, this app is fast coming to replace the local events and meet-ups that happened before the Covid pandemic stuck the world. It has offered a place for professionals, investors, and business owners around the world to discuss topics with similar-minded people from all around the world. The app has already become one of the most popular ones in the Black entertainment community.
The style of the conversation is casual and flexible rather than a formal talk show and offers an opportunity for all to share ideas and talk. After all, it is like a legal way of listening to a phone call of another person with no editing, no transitions, no sound effects, and no official advertising.