Is Clubhouse the best marketing tool in 2021?
New year, new beginnings, and a new social media platform? This year, Clubhouse suddenly took the world by storm. This app enables its users to talk to celebrities, poets, startup incubators, news anchors, singers… basically anyone who you wouldn’t otherwise have access to. You don’t even have to pay to listen to your role models talk — this app is completely free for people to use and learn from. The only catch is that you need to be invited in order to be a member.
Clubhouse owes its quick rise to many demonstrated development hacking techniques — sent by start-up founders to drive downloads and secure users, as well as great timing. The app first launched in April 2020, as the world went into a lockdown in-person interaction, occasions, and entertainment was cut off. People crave human connection so much to the point that they are willing to spend hours on a glitchy app just to experience some sort of human connection.
This app was valued at 100 million dollars by the venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz according to Forbes and this was when it was only a few months old, had fewer than 5,000 beta testers, and still utilizing Google Forms for invites.
Initially, this app was marketed towards social media influencers, celebrities, CEOS, but now more and more brands are making accounts on this app. Adapting to a new media is always difficult, but with Clubhouse there will be a number of additional challenges. The reason for this is because it is an audio-only app that isn’t repeatable and lacks any visual support. Therefore, brands who want to make themselves present on this platform should think out of the box.
Despite its difficulties, being on Clubhouse may actually be beneficial for brands as it will help to humanize that said brand. The audio aspect makes the message given by brands feel more personal. Instead of worrying about the packaging such as how the brand look or where the event takes place, messages conveyed by the brands will be judged based on the intonation, inflection and emotion conveyed through a simple voice note which really upholds human connections.
One of the biggest things that a brand should note though, is that people are on the app to learn and connect. So, hard selling should already be off the list. There was even one room with more than 100 people from all over the world that discussed about how to keep this app ad-free. They were talking about subscriptions or doing a petition to Clubhouse to stop brands from advertising. This is a sign that people actually go to clubhouse to take a break from what usually would be their cup of tea on other social media platforms.
Then, what can brands do at Clubhouse? The formula is still the same with other platforms; provides value. The ‘what’ isn’t in question but rather, the ‘how’. One of the easiest ways to tackle this is to collaborate. Collaborate with other business owners, CEOs, capital ventures, most likely they are all trying to make a presence on this app as well.
“But how would you promote your brand if other brands are present as well?” you might ask. The key to this is to be the initiator. Approach the other speakers, set the topic, create the conversation guideline and be the moderator. Use your logo the brand’s logo as an avatar and be the one crafting the conversation. The logo will serve as free promotion for your brand and since you’re the one who chose the topic, the conversation will definitely benefit your brand. For example, KoinWorks — a super financial app from Indonesia — has created a ClubHouse account where it moderates conversations about investments, startups, and businesses with notable leaders and personnel across the country. Not to mention, they also hold conversations with the employees as the speakers to talk about everyday topics such as how they survive the month with their salary, how are they planning to buy a house when the market prices for property has skyrocketed in these recent years, and many more. Never once have they promoted their brands in a way that is offputting. Everything was crafted so skillfully so that the audience will be comfortable and are constantly engaged with the conversation.
Even so, there is still a lot of trials and errors that should be done in the near future as Clubhouse is still a baby in comparison to the other social media platforms. What I can say (and is in line with the branding of ClubHouse) is that you should jump on the bandwagon before it’s too late. The FOMO is real.