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Just recently we received invitations to join the hot new voice-only social networking platform called Clubhouse, and we have been somewhat obsessed with it… It’s our job to investigate potential risks and opportunities for our clients, and so we’ve been spending quite a bit of time investigating this one…
At this stage, we are still very much in “early adopter” territory with this app. We Just joined. This experience has gotten us thinking about the relationship between early adoption and community building. We will continue to experiment with Clubhouse and report back what we find, but our early analysis is that this is a platform that is worth investing time into, if you are able to get an invite.
Full disclaimer: We are not going to call ourselves “Clubhouse Experts”. We are new to this, just like you. The platform is brand new and radically different from existing platforms, so there literally are no experts. So let’s get sociable and learn together!
What is Clubhouse?
Clubhouse seems to be the “new kid on the block” in the “trendy-new-social-startup” scene. It is a very simple concept. It is a social space online that hosts what those of us over 40 will instantly recognize as something akin to the “party lines” of the ’80s and ’90s, where you could call in and be put into a call with a number of other people. Except now we have the added bonus of being able to create profiles and view the different people that are talking!
Currently, sign-ups are by invitation only, which means that if you want to get your own account and try it out, you may be out of luck, unless you can convince somebody already on the platform to grant you one of their precious 2 invitations they get to send. In other words, we are seeing the birth of a new social platform. Whether that platform will survive past infancy to become the next Instagram is yet to be determined. But in the meantime, it’s here, and it’s what everybody is talking about.
Should I invest time into Clubhouse for Marketing Purposes?
There are so many social media platforms out there, it would be impossible for most organizations to have a legitimate presence on each. The standard device for marketing managers is to pick the platforms that your audience is on. This makes sense. In my industry, we love Linkedin and Twitter. Other platforms like Instagram are growing, and I know that there are healthy Telegram and WeChat communities, as well… So that is where most organizations spend their marketing dollars.
However, only focusing on where your clients are today means that you are missing opportunities to focus on where your clients are going to be tomorrow. Rather than fighting for your client’s attention in the currency landscape, wouldn’t you rather welcome your clients into the new platform as they are joining?
When people are first joining a community or researching a group, they are naturally going to look for groups or profiles that share their interests. If you happen to have the only group on the new platform, of course they are going to sign up for it – if for no other reason because they are playing around with it.
Be an early adopter (always)
Will Clubhouse be the next Twitter? Probably not… but maybe! That’s what we need to find out. But imagine… how would your online presence be different today if you were one of the earliest users of Twitter, or Linkedin? If you are an early adopter of any movement or platform, then you have the opportunity to help set the tone. When new technologies or platforms like Clubhouse pop up, nobody really knows which direction they are going to go in.
That’s the funny thing about communities… they tend to take on a life of their own. Many times this turns into something entirely different from what the original creators intended. The people with the most influence over this direction are those who are most committed in the early stages. If you ever have the opportunity to be part of a community-building process in the early stages, we strongly suggest you go for it!
Not every endeavor will be successful, but if you are always waiting to let others be the early adopters for new technology, then you will never even have the opportunity to be successful.
Whenever there is a movement, there is an opportunity to be the first. There is an opportunity to own that space before your competitors are even aware of it. We believe that this is what we are witnessing here with Clubhouse, but even if we didn’t we would be investigating this new platform to find out for ourselves so that we can be constantly ready to recognize and act on new opportunities as they arise.