Is the Clubhouse app really all it’s cut out to be?
Do you need to be using it for your business?
Or are we all suffering from a major case of shiny object syndrome?
Amelia is a digital native who became a practitioner of digital marketing 12 years ago by working as a virtual assistant, and then most recently as a social media manager.
Amelia is also an early adopter of the Clubhouse app, so I wanted to pick her brain and find out her views on using the app for business.
But first, let’s jump in with the basics.
What is the Clubhouse App?
For those who don’t know, Clubhouse is a voice-only social media app. It’s currently in beta, and is only available by invitation at this point. (Want to know how to get an invite? Find out in my post, What is the Clubhouse App:Everything You Need to Know).For those who don’t know, Clubhouse is a voice-only social media app. It’s currently in beta, and is only available by invitation at this point.Click To Tweet
According to Amelia, the beauty of the app is that you don’t have to worry about distractions, about having to do your hair or makeup, or about having amazing graphic design skills: “None of that matters. The only thing that really does matter is your voice, and the value you bring to a room.”
What I find fascinating about the app is the ability to connect with others in a really impromptu and unscripted way.
In the early days of social media, people actually spent time talking to one another (I know, hard to believe right? <grin>).
However, somewhere along the way, social media turned into a broadcast system. It became more about who presents themselves best, and who has the prettiest images; but with Clubhouse, we’re moving back to really connecting with one another.
This is great news for perfectionists!
You don’t have to worry about whether or not your background is perfect, or if your lighting is right. Instead, you can hop on from anywhere – even sitting in your bed – to listen, talk and connect.
Why is There so Much Buzz About the Clubhouse App?
Conversations about Clubhouse have been blowing up on platforms like Reddit.
If you’ve been online at all over the past few months, you’ve undoubtedly noticed the internet has been all “atwitter” with talk of the app.
And, this has likely led you to ask: Why are people so excited about Clubhouse?
I think one reason is the unprecedented access people are getting to celebrities and influencers who are giving of their time and energy and knowledge, all with no expectation of reward.
These are my kind of people!
Interestingly, some of these people are ones I wouldn’t have thought would invest so much time and energy to help others…which is why I wanted to ask Amelia: What’s going on here? What dynamic is at play exactly?
Amelia’s thoughts? It’s likely largely about the timing: “We are kind of all starved for the live interaction that our networking events provided, and that our conferences provided”.
She points out that there’s a part of the app called the “Hallway”; and at in-person conferences, important conversations happened in the hallways between sessions. You could dip in and out of different rooms when you saw something interesting, and then go back to the hallway.
The Clubhouse Hallway
This is exactly how Clubhouse works. You start out in the Hallway, and then go into rooms to hear different conversations. And while these conversations are similar to podcasts, you have the important benefit of being able to actually participate in the conversations: you can raise your hand, potentially be invited to the stage, and ask questions. You can even share your own story if it adds value to the conversation.
Another reason for Clubhouse’s early success, according to Amelia, is the culture created and nurtured by the app’s founders, Paul Davison and Rohan Seth: “They’re very concerned about scaling while keeping intimacy. They’ve said that a couple of times: we want to scale, and we want to keep empathy and intimacy.”
They’re concerned about keeping that close-knit, giving spirit, and they’ve said several times that they don’t want their app to be like other social media platforms.
Another reason for all the hype, in my opinion, is the access to major influencers you can’t get anywhere else. They’re answering questions and giving out knowledge that would normally cost you thousands of dollars.Another reason for all the hype, in my opinion, is the access to major influencers you can’t get anywhere else. They’re answering questions and giving out knowledge that would normally cost you thousands of dollars.Click To Tweet
That alone is worth checking out the app!
Will Clubhouse Replace Podcasts?
I’ve heard conversations about this recently, and wanted to get Amelia’s take on it.
While Clubhouse definitely shares some similarities with podcasts, a major difference, according to Amelia, is that you can’t pause conversations on Clubhouse.
Another difference is that you can’t record conversations on Clubhouse to listen to later…at least not without first making it extremely clear to participants that the room is being recorded.
But what if you heard something really great in a room, and want to listen to it again?
Unfortunately, you have to be present the first time. Amelia likens this to being at an in-person conference: “Back in the day…we would never ask a conference organizer, “Hey, was there a replay for the conference?”.
And, that’s part of the allure of the app: all the content is ephemeral.
You get a notification that someone is going live, and if you don’t join in that moment, you’ve missed out.
The FOMO is real on Clubhouse!
So in a nutshell: neither Amelia nor myself believe Clubhouse will replace podcasts. However, I do think that as the app evolves, it would be nice to marry the two strategies in some capacity.
For instance, I would like to see the ability to listen to something after the fact. Right now, you don’t even have 24 hours – it’s all in the moment.
But, I’ve heard there’s a lot of stuff in the works, so we’ll see what develops in the coming months!
What to do First When You Join Clubhouse
A preview of the Clubhouse “Hallway”
Okay – so you’ve joined Clubhouse.
As with any new platform, it can take a little while to figure out how to use it.
However, Amelia has some great tips for anyone just getting started with Clubhouse.
Tip #1: Be a good dinner party guest.
What do you normally do at a dinner party?
The same rules apply to being on Clubhouse: “Read the room, take time to observe…don’t just start rooms and get on stage your first day”.What do you normally do at a dinner party? The same rules apply to being on Clubhouse: “Read the room, take time to observe…don’t just start rooms and get on stage your first day”.Click To Tweet
Before jumping in to speak, ask yourself: What’s the culture of the room? Are people sharing their life stories? Are they asking questions?
Be a good guest and stick to the unwritten rules and vibe of the room.
Tip #2: Open your own room.
Once you’re familiar with how Clubhouse works, Amelia recommends creating your own room as soon as possible.
During your first week on the app, you have a party hat on your profile pic to indicate that you’re new. Use this as an opportunity to start rooms, make mistakes, find friends, and get practice at facilitating conversations.
People will go easy on you when they see that hat!
Tip #3: Consider how Clubhouse fits into your social media strategy.
Amelia has heard of one person making 60K in one evening on Clubhouse, and another making 90K over the course of 5 days.
However, the reason they were able to do this was that they had a strategy in place: a strategy to connect with those who wanted to continue the relationship after the room ended (e.g., a dedicated landing page, free offer, offer to connect via Instagram DM, etc.).
When you have this in place, expect your path from “cold to close” to work fast!
According to Amelia, the funnel is much shorter than on other platforms, as it really is filtered down to just your voice.
Tip #4: Optimize your bio.
A fourth tip I want to add is the importance of completing your Clubhouse bio.
When you hear of these amazing monetization stories, it’s when people are leveraging their bios in order to drive people to their email list. They’re sharing amazing, value-based content on the platform, and then people are checking out your bio.
And this is what’s creating sales.
Luckily, the character limit for your bio is much longer than on other platforms. And you can link to your Twitter and Instagram accounts, letting people know you want to continue the conversation there.
Click here for more tips on optimizing your Clubhouse bio for business.
The Biggest Mistake People Make on Clubhouse
We’ve talked about what you should do on the app – but what about what you shouldn’t do?
One of the biggest mistake Amelia sees people making is using Clubhouse rooms like webinars. In a webinar, people go to sit and watch you present on a topic. However, on Clubhouse, this kind of format doesn’t convert very well.
Amelia says it’s fine to give 10 or 20 minutes of education on a topic. However, after that, open it up to discussion, rather than doing a full-on, hour-length presentation.
Instead of doing a brain dump, it’s about setting the stage, giving value, and then bringing people up from your audience and making them part of the conversation.Instead of doing a brain dump, it’s about setting the stage, giving value, and then bringing people up from your audience and making them part of the conversation.Click To Tweet
Unfortunately, this is also something that scares some people, according to Amelia. They are afraid of taking on-the-spot questions that they haven’t prepared for.
Some people may need to consult a virtual assistant, do some fact finding, or come back later to answer the question. But even if this does happen to you from time to time, it’s still really is a wonderful opportunity to let your true expertise show.
If you are afraid of answering questions on the spot, one strategy Amelia recommends is inviting a co-moderator who also has expertise in your field.
For instance, when Amelia wanted to have a conversation about how the nursing process matches the sales process, she invited Cheryl Parks – who has closed over $25 Million of enterprise-level sales – to co-moderate with her.
This is a great way to reduce your fear, and add even more value to your conversations!
What’s the Difference Between Clubhouse Rooms and Clubs?
Example of a club
One question that comes up a lot is: What’s the difference between rooms and clubs?
Clubs are similar to Facebook groups, where people can gather around a particular topic. However, unlike Facebook groups – where events are only available to members inside the group – clubs can also hold public events.
If people enjoy these public events, they can then choose to join the club. Once inside the club, they’re notified of private, member-only events as well.
Rooms, on the other hand, are where you hold conversations about a particular topic.
For instance, you may choose to hold a room every week on the same topic, or you might just hop on and set up an impromptu room.
Note: If you want to start your own club, you’ll need to host three rooms first. So if you think you might want to start a club, the time to start creating rooms is NOW!
How to Use Clubhouse for Your Business
Want to learn how to use CH for business? There are rooms for that!
This is something many business owners are struggling with right now. They see huge potential to connect with their audience, but still aren’t quite sure how to leverage the platform for business.
One strategy Amelia has been using successfully is giving out her scheduling link so people can book a consult with her. She’ll often offer up a free resource when people ask for help, and then let them know they can set up a call if they still have questions.
Another strategy she uses is offering notes to people after a room closes. She lets people know that if they found the room helpful, they can tap through to her Instagram and she’ll send them the notes from the conversation.
Though she hasn’t set this up yet, you could even put these notes up behind an email service: so people can only get your notes if they opt in to your email list.
Amelia has even seen people set up a Gumroad link and charge $5 for their notes or for additional info.
When figuring out how to use Clubhouse for your business, Amelia recommends asking the same kinds of questions you’d ask at an in-person networking event:
How do you plan on nurturing relationships with people on Clubhouse?
What’s your follow-up process?
How will you stay in touch with people who contact you?
Once you’ve answered these questions, you’ll be able to tell what’s working on Clubhouse, and what’s not.
For instance, Amelia has heard stories of people getting hundreds and hundreds of DMs following a Clubhouse event.
To make these DMs count, these people will need to have a way to manage and process these requests.
While this is a good problem to have, it’s definitely something you want to think about before you dive headfirst into presenting or hosting rooms.
Important reminder: Because there is no way to communicate via private message on Clubhouse, you will need to move the conversation to another platform.Important reminder: Because there is no way to communicate via private message on Clubhouse, you will need to move the conversation to another platform.Click To Tweet
Fortunately, the people who come to your inbox are generally motivated to take the next step with you: whether it’s a discovery call, or to learn more about a program you’ve talked about.
So you definitely don’t want those contacts falling through the cracks!
Want more strategies for getting leads and sales through the app? Check out my post on how to use the Clubhouse app for business.
So, to answer the question asked in the title of this post: Is Clubhouse the next big social media platform?
It certainly seems that way, but only time will tell.
But, less than a year in since its creation, it’s definitely making waves and is a platform I’ll be watching closely!
Are you on Clubhouse yet? What do you like about it? What do you not like? Share below!