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Surely by now, you’ve heard of Clubhouse - the exclusive invite-only audio chat app teeming with the likes of Oprah, Elon Musk and Tiffany Haddish. Here’s our step-by-step guide to growing your following on Clubhouse.
Another social media app...how is that going to help my business? You ask. Well, we’ll answer. The Clubhouse App comes straight out of Silicon Valley’s best and is currently estimated to be valued at US$100 million. It is unlike any other social media platform as users don’t share trivial information about themselves. No cat videos or selfies here.
What is Clubhouse, exactly?
Long story short, Clubhouse is a TED Talks style app where like-minded professionals interact over industry topics or interests via one-time access webinars. Users can start “rooms” and moderate discussions, and the rest of the people can drop-in to the audio chat as passive listeners or add their opinions as contributors if they wish.
It’s almost like a large Zoom voice chat where you can unmute yourselves or raise questions to contribute to an ongoing discussion.
With key point people on Clubhouse listening to new start-up pitches such as Kevin Harrington of Sharktank it is very possible to walk away with a potential investor for your idea. It is also a great way to position yourself as a thought-leader in your industry providing counsel on your personal experiences. In this manner, small business owners are able to create a following fairly quickly with other like-minded individuals via the Clubhouse app and by being pioneers of the audio chat phenomenon. Remember when it was the same for Instagram and Facebook in the beginning? People were connecting with each other constantly and being supportive. Clubhouse is currently in that stage.
How do I get an invite to Clubhouse?
Ah, the age-old question of getting an invitation. The easiest way is asking someone you already know who has an account on the platform to invite you. But if you don’t know of anyone, you can trawl Facebook groups or Reddit threads for Clubhouse invites. There are some shady people selling invites, however, there is a community that is equally dedicated to keeping invites to Clubhouse free (as they should be). That’s how you can go about trawling for an invitation.
Before you get the invitation, download the app on your iOS device (Sorry Andriod users, it’s in its beta testing stages at the moment and can only be downloaded via App Store). Register your mobile number/user name, and be very patient! Once you’re all set up and you’ve found an invite - you’ll need to provide them with your registered number and user name. Et voila, you’re now on Clubhouse!
How do I set up my Clubhouse profile?
Congratulations! You’re on Clubhouse. Now to set up your profile. As with most profiles, you’ll need to include a profile photo. If you’re using Clubhouse for professional reasons, use a powerful profile image that attracts the eye and stands out from the hoi polloi. There may be 100,000 users and counting on Clubhouse, but you still have to stand out.
Clubhouse’s profiles are also utilised for SEO on the app, so make sure your most important keywords are included in your first three sentences. At the moment, it does not seem like there’s a word limit for your bio, so you can go ham and add as many emojis and line breaks as you want. However, do be ever aware of the TLDR syndrome. Be succinct and market yourself as snazzily as you can. After that, explore all the different topics and clubs you’d like to join. This can range from fintech to social media marketing to entrepreneurship stories.
How do I use Clubhouse to Grow My Business?
Easy peasy, once you’ve gotten the hang of it. Check out this comprehensive Clubhouse 101 guide. But TLDR, to summarise - you’ll see a calendar of both active and planned discussions based on the interests groups you’ve selected.
1. Start Discussion Topics
As a business owner, you can start discussion topics with other friends on Clubhouse regarding entrepreneurship to soft-sell your business on the platform by providing advice and tales of experience. Or you may join a similar room regarding small businesses or entrepreneurship and try to join in on the conversation.
2. Offer your own expertise and advice
The platform is excellent as a soundboard for improvements on your business ideas with people from all over the world. This provides you as a small business owner, a chance to gain a fresh global perspective on your business plan or idea.
3. Join the conversation in relevant rooms
During your first week, others will see the party emoji next to your profile image in the rooms which means you are a new user and this signals more experienced users to assist you with any interface confusion. Simply raise your hand in the room you’re in (if you have a question or have something to say), and then wait for the moderators to invite you to the virtual stage. There is no hierarchy per se, you can speak at any time. While speaking, you can introduce yourself and your business/other social media handles - and seek advice on growing your following while raising awareness amongst the niche group on Clubhouse. It has been reported that other platforms such as Instagram and Facebook have seen some organic growth traction from a person just asking a question during a discussion. You can leave the room quietly by simply clicking on the “Leave quietly” button. There’s no need to announce your arrival or departure.
4. Highlight your business and links on your profile
Don’t forget to link your website in your bio or Twitter/Instagram accounts to Clubhouse. While speaking in rooms and plugging your hustle, others in the room may be compelled to check out your profile. Having those links your bio would help convert some of that interest from the Clubhouse app over to your other pages.
How to start your own room in Clubhouse
Unless you are a celebrity in your own right, it is unlikely you’ll be able to maintain a long talk all by yourself without the help of moderators. Heck, even celebrities are partnering up with others to help moderate the conversation. It is advised to partner up with other users to start a discussion room about your topic of choice - for example: How to get started in the restaurant business or Entrepreneurship support. Be aware that this is a global platform and the people you want to talk to maybe in a different timezone. So plan accordingly in order to get the most members.
Here are four quick pointers to begin:
- Good moderators allow time for participation and calling on other people in the room to contribute to the discussion. Once these contributors join you on the “stage” lookout for the unmuting of microphones as that usually signals they want to talk.
- When someone raises their hand to join the conversation, do check out their bios to introduce them properly to the room.
- Do recaps at intervals of the conversation so people joining the room at different times can catch up.
- End the room at the appropriate time. An hour or 90 minutes is usually good enough. No one wants a discussion that drags on.
Clubhouse at the moment is not a hard-sell platform where you can solely promote your services or sales. It’s very much a discussion ground where people are dedicated to advise or help other people in similar businesses. If you’re lucky - you may even enter a celebrity room. Imagine being able to have your question answered by the likes of Oprah or Elon Musk.
At the moment, Clubhouse discussion rooms are live and not recorded. Unless you are secretly screen recording, which is bad etiquette. So, don’t be shy to ask a question! The more rooms you participate in (either actively or passively), you’ll gain more invites to enable more friends and industry professionals to join the site. If you gained your invite through Reddit or Facebook - there is an expectation of paying it forward to others formerly in your position.
Clubhouse at the moment is very much in its infancy stages of growth, but as with most social media platforms, early adopters tend to be able to expand their following a lot quicker via new apps as the algorithms are kinder to users. Take advantage of it and hop on the Clubhouse bandwagon.