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Home Blog App Promotion Strategy Why Is Everyone Talking About Clubhouse? Inspiration for Developers and Marketers

Why Is Everyone Talking About Clubhouse? Inspiration for Developers and Marketers

Feb 20 2021

clubhouse


According to a market analysis firm, Clubhouse, which has been in existence for about nine months, has already been downloaded 2.3 million times as of January 31. What is so remarkable about this invitation-only voice communication app, which has already gained many elite users and is now "hard to find"? Are the invited users equal to the "elite circle" and can they enjoy the unique social resources? Does this enrich the discussion space and outcomes for public intellectuals?

What is Clubhouse app?


In recent months, a new social product popular all over the world, celebrity circles have been hot. It's called Clubhouse, it's called the "audio Twitter", it hasn't even hit the shelves yet, it has only 5,000 users in beta, and it's already valued at $100 million. In short, it's a real-time voice chat room. When you open the app, you can see who's in the room, what they're talking about, and decide whether to continue listening or just join the group chat.

Clubhouse provides a social experience very similar to a large-scale audio-only virtual event. Currently, there are approximately 1 million users on Clubhouse and at any given time, there are thousands of meeting rooms where people from all over the world engage in conversations about different industries, professions and interests.

The voice-only restriction is similar to an on-demand podcast, but the ephemeral nature of Clubhouse content depends on FOMO (fear of missing out). Conversations are held in real time and are not recorded for playback. If you are not in the room, you will miss what is happening. This means people spend a lot of time on the app, expecting and looking for conversations about topics that interest them, whether they are listening or sharing from the stage.

In the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic, two techies started a new social network built around an increasingly unloved feature of people's iPhones: actually talking into it. The app, called Clubhouse, was at first niche. There are no posts, no pictures, no videos. As if to underline how little time you need to look at it, the home screen is a white-on-beige endless scroll of conference calls, called "rooms," filled with people you might not know organized around topics like police brutality, music, sex, or whatever else was on people's minds. Users can be moderators, hosting their own conversations and controlling who speaks. A digital audience can listen in, or ask to participate if they have something to say. The action happened all in your earbuds.  

The app, started by Paul Davison, an entrepreneur who'd previously sold a company to Pinterest, and Rohan Seth, a former Google engineer, was a way to get people talking and trading ideas spontaneously, without filters or having to put on an outfit, they later wrote. At first, it was open to only a few thousand users -- though they were the right users, Silicon Valley venture capitalists and others who controlled the flow of money and influence. And, true to its name, they prioritized an in-crowd by requiring invitations (they said this was to not grow too fast). Then the big money rolled in. VC giant Andreessen Horowitz pumped in $12 million weeks after it launched. By its ninth month of existence, it was worth $1 billion.

Why does Clubhouse have viral app growth?


Why did Clubhouse, which mainly uses voice function to communicate, suddenly appear on the scene? In terms of the business model, Clubhouse adopts an invitation system, and each user can only invite two friends to join, which means that not everyone can register, and successful registration is a symbol of identity. Therefore, in addition to the novelty of the model, can promote multi-party communication, there are also many comments that "vanity has boosted Clubhouse", and now in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and three places on some auction or online shopping platform, there is also speculation on the invitation code situation.

Paul Davison, one of the founders, said that Clubhouse was created in the hope that users would have more access to experts and discover new ideas. In fact, the platform was initially used by Silicon Valley startups, investors, and technology professionals, but later expanded to include business and celebrity influencers who have an impact on the industry and society, making people eager to talk to them directly, and the growth effect brought by such celebrity users is also one of the reasons why Clubhouse is attracting attention.

Although the invitation system is used, users only have two chances to invite others, which is a de facto filter. There is no denying that invitation-based apps have been around since before Clubhouse, such as ASmallWorld, a social networking app for the upper class, and The Inner Circle, a dating app, both of which used an "exclusive" marketing approach to build their reputation, but as the number of users grows, can quality be guaranteed?

How do you get an invite to the exclusive audio app?


Social audio app Clubhouse has now topped 8 million global downloads, despite still being in a pre-launch, invite-only mode, according to new data released today by mobile data and analytics firm App Annie. Per its estimates, Clubhouse grew from over 3.5 million global downloads as of February 1, 2021, to reach 8.1 million by February 16, 2021. This sharp growth is attributed to several high-profile guest appearances, including those from Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, for example.

Seriously polarized reviews


Among those who have used it, those who are extremely positive say that it is the first time since Instagram that they have seen such an exciting social product, a novel experience and full of possibilities; those who are extremely negative say that it is a total self-importance of the Silicon Valley elite.

But these comments didn't stop it from continuing to make the rounds on Twitter. Those who used it naturally wanted to review it so that everyone would know they had used it; the many locust users who hadn't used it yet were begging for insider testing status so they could become the former.


Extremely pursuing a rapid iteration strategy


There are only two people in the core team, and they release new versions and add new features every day.

Both are serial entrepreneurs, one worked at Google, was a resident entrepreneur at Benchmark for over a year, came out and started a product called Highlight, was invested by A16Z and acquired by Pinterest in 2016.

The parent company has a great investment lineup


Clubhouse's parent company, Alpha Exploration, closed its seed round in February of this year. Investors include Houseparty co-founder, well-known angel investor Todd Goldberg, Superhuman co-founder, AngelList co-founder, etc.

Clubhouse's latest round of funding triggered bidding from two heavyweight VCs in the US


Benchmark quoted $80 million, A16Z offered a better price and successfully invested in Series A - at a $100 million valuation of $10 million.


User behavior and characteristics are very special


Some of its early adopters are said to use it for an average of 8 to 12 hours a day. Compared to a normal social product where one user is worth about $100, Clubhouse is worth $20,000 per user, which is 200 times more than the former.

How do I get a Clubhouse invite?


Clubhouse is still in a private beta phase and available only to iPhone users, which is what fuels its exclusive nature.

As of now, there are only two ways you can get onto the platform and they both require close relationships with people already on the app:

By personal invitation: When someone joins Clubhouse, they're automatically granted one invitation they can send to someone using their phone number. This means members are going to send invitations to people they have a close connection to, like a good friend, rather than merely an acquaintance. Once someone is on Clubhouse for a while and spends time moderating rooms and speaking, both of which I cover later in this article, they can earn more invites to send.

Exclusive side-door: When you try to visit Clubhouse's website, they give you an option to download the app from the App Store so you can reserve your username. Depending on how many of your friends are already using Clubhouse, they may receive a notification letting them know that you've reserved your username and downloaded the app. When this happens, they get the option to wave you through even if they don't have an official invitation to send (and it doesn't use one of their invitations if they haven't already used it yet).

Cases study for business owners and marketers


If you are a marketer or business owner, this is a great opportunity to establish yourself or the brands you work with as a go-to resource and promote products, services or events. The opportunity to share your brand story or founding story, connect with customers, get product feedback, organize impromptu focus groups and generate marketing awareness is ready to join Clubhouse.

Clubhouse provides a social experience very similar to a large-scale audio-only virtual event. Currently, there are approximately 1 million users on Clubhouse and at any given time, there are thousands of meeting rooms where people from all over the world engage in conversations about different industries, professions and interests.

The voice-only restriction is similar to an on-demand podcast, but the ephemeral nature of Clubhouse content depends on FOMO (fear of missing out). Conversations are held in real time and are not recorded for playback. If you are not in the room, you will miss what is happening. This means people spend a lot of time on the app, expecting and looking for conversations about topics that interest them, whether they are listening or sharing from the stage.

If you are a marketer or business owner, this is a great opportunity to establish yourself or the brands you work with as a go-to resource and promote products, services or events. The opportunity to share your brand story or founding story, connect with customers, get product feedback, organize impromptu focus groups and generate marketing awareness is ready to join Clubhouse.

Invitation-based marketing tactics: creating the illusion of an elite circle


The elite group has long gone from dressing to show their identity to participating in specific communities and enjoying exclusive experiences to gain identity. Indeed, the invitation system has set a high threshold for people to effectively and quickly obtain resource exchange in the era of resource sharing, and people think that being in a "by invitation only" community makes it easier to meet similar people with matching hobbies, values and economic power. Therefore, many businesses take advantage of the illusion of elite circle created by the "invitation system" for marketing. For example, Summit, a summit of creative industry professionals that has become popular in the era of the experience economy, is a summit established by a group of West Coast entrepreneurs and held annually in Los Angeles and Tulum, Mexico, for a three-day experience that includes participation in lectures, meditation, yoga, local cuisine and indigenous culture. --with celebrities like Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos on the stage, applicants must be "outstanding leaders" in their field and be recommended by two known Summit community members and screened to join. I was at Tulum just before. I went to Tulum just in time for Summit and was intrigued by the invite-only marketing, so I emailed Summit's membership director to ask him about it. Unfortunately, the membership officer was a salesperson with poor rhetorical skills, and she was clearly over-eager in her attempt to recruit me. Since I was so easily enrolled without a referral, it felt like Summit was just a summer camp for adults that gathered interesting people (but not necessarily very cutting-edge leaders).

The difficulty of expanding "invitation-based" marketing: when content and resources are no longer exclusive to the few


Many invite-only businesses experience the problem of uneven quality of membership after expansion, which is not the original intention of the founders, but they have to "lower the bar" in front of business interests. Many of the UK's century-old gentlemen's clubs began to recruit women and expand their membership because of financial difficulties, and while Soho House had a "longer waiting list than Hermes" in the press, it even had an episode of Sex and the City where even a big publicist Even in the Sex and the City episode where even Samantha Jones had to use a found membership card to steal access to the club's outdoor pool, membership is actually expanding, and many long-time members are complaining that the overall quality of membership is not what it used to be. Even so, it does provide a sense of community and social and office convenience for creative industry professionals as a "home away from home", and this impression of a community of top creative industry professionals has made the Soho House brand image very strong.

Prior to Clubhouse, there were a number of "invitation-only" websites and apps that were popular among elites in Europe and the US, including ASmallWorld, which has been called "the MySpace for millionaires" by the foreign media, and The Inner House, a dating app for elites. The Inner Circle and The League, the dating apps for elites, have gone from being "exclusive cliques" that gathered high quality people, to content and access that became less exclusive to a few and less popular every day. With these previous experiences as a reference, it is still not clear how long Clubhouse can be "elite", but its popularity does prove once again that the "invitation-only" marketing strategy has a good grasp of consumers' pain points.

The "exclusivity" is the trend of the moment. However, in the future, the shortcomings and flaws of this kind of "invite-based" community building products will not be exposed in turn - when the "exclusive" group is rejected by a large number of "them". These offline and online clubs and membership products are bound to lose the elite members who joined earlier when the "exclusive" groups are infiltrated by the "them". So where do the elites go? They will look for the next boom and will still be the first to get the word.


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