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What the Heck Is Clubhouse and Do I Need to Use It?

You’ve been hearing about Clubhouse, and you’re still not sure what it is, how to use it or if it’s worth it. I had been wondering the same things, so I did some research and snagged an invite. Here’s what you need to know.

 

What is Clubhouse?

 

Clubhouse is a new, audio-only social media app. I haven’t confirmed this, but I suspect the founders are tapping into our collective love for podcasting. However, the audio-only format is where the similarities end.

 

Listening to a podcast is a passive experience. Clubhouse is an active experience – at least if you want to get something out of it. The name of the game is “participation.”

 

It is currently invite-only (which is why their home page looks like this), but I’m not sure how exclusive that makes it. I have five invites already, and I’ve barely used the app. (Hit me up if you want one.)

 

How does it work?

 

In short, the app points you to conversations (happening in “rooms”) that you might find of value. When you first log in, it asks for permission to connect to your phone contacts. Then it asks if you want to follow trending people. Then it asks what topics you want to follow.

 

When someone and/or a topic you follow is hosting a room, you get an alert (if you choose to turn on notifications). You can join the room and listen and participate. You can also choose to hang out in the “hallway” where you can see what conversations are happening now and what’s scheduled to happen.

 

Once you feel comfortable using the app (of if you like to jump in with both feet first), you can open up a room and start a conversation.

 

Oh, and by the way – nothing is recorded. Once the conversation is over, that’s it. No replays.

 

Do I need to use it?

 

The short (and totally annoying) answer is, “I don’t know.” Like anything marketing-related, it depends on who your audience is. Are they using Clubhouse? And if they are, do you have the time to constantly jump into and/or host rooms?

 

Before you say, “No way!” – like I initially did – keep reading. I checked in with some friends to see what their experience has been so far. Tom, who invited me to join, and Lori have made fantastic connections and already gotten clients from Clubhouse.

 

Melanie said the jury is still out, but she’s going to stick with it for a month. She also said you need to get up on stage and lead a conversation. Even though Clubhouse is still invite-only, it’s crowded and hard to stand out.

 

Their feedback has convinced me to use it.

 

If you do use it, don’t make the same mistakes I did.

 

Be picky about who you follow on Clubhouse

 

Do not let the app suggest you follow people who are trending. I ended up with a steady stream of notifications about random stuff, like:

 

Sheel Mohnot, Logan Bartlett and Ryan are talking in the RIFF Radio room about “RIFF Radio Hour w/ Logan Bartlett.”

 

No idea who those people are or what RIFF Radio is.

 

Only follow a few topics

 

Likewise, do not follow every topic that sounds interesting. Pick two or three that are related to your business. This will your experience much less overwhelming, trust me.

 

Use the schedule – it’s your friend

 

I cannot stop and start work constantly. I’ll get nothing done. If you’re the same as me, turn off notifications and pop into the app to see what conversations are happening or scheduled. If they sound interesting, join them.

 

If this sounds like a lot, you’re right. I’m happy to be your guinea pig, so check back in a month or so. I’ll write a follow up post and report back.

 

If instead you want to stick with your current social media platforms (don’t blame you!), be sure to read this post on what content drives the most engagement.

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