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February 18, 2021

Go to the Clubhouse…App

Tony Treadway

Go to the Clubhouse...App

Been waiting for the next best thing since LinkedIn for business networking? Try the Clubhouse app. Think small group podcast where you can chime in.

The audio chat-based networking app was so hot upon its launch in April 2020, with just 1,500 users, it was valued at $100 million. Less than a year later, with 600,000 users, Clubhouse is valued at $1 billion.

Once invited by a user to join Clubhouse, the downloaded app walks you through a process of defining your interests and your benefits as a professional within the app. I found myself within a group of like-minded members defined as “Foodie Nerds”. Thus, you are invited into virtual audio chat rooms of fellow Foodie Nerds much like popping into a live podcast where your relevant topic is being discussed. The leader of the discussion may recognize you as you enter, or you can tap to raise your hand to be called on during the discussion. Once you are asked, tap to turn on your mike and you are sharing your insights with everyone in the group.

I journeyed into my first chat with an alert on my smartphone from the friend that said there was a discussion underway on chain restaurant recovery that had been organized by the “creator”. This is where a company leader as a “creator” can establish thought leadership and their brand. For my first experience, the creator has a foodservice consultancy after serving as senior VP of Impossible Foods. Inside, I find a former CMO of White Castle burger chain and several other valuable contacts to begin the networking process. Most of the people I met in the discussion were rookies, just like me, to the experience.

The app is experimenting with a Clubhouse influencers program. Celebrity hosts who create talk shows, D.J. nights, speed dating, and networking events. Much like those who now draw millions of followers on YouTube, there is a financial model in the making with this app that hopefully lives up to its billion-dollar valuation. 

There is something about the extemporaneous voice-driven discussion that was intriguing. Unlike the incessant automated messages found on LinkedIn that are making the networking platform an annoyance at times, my first Clubhouse experience felt organic and real. Everyone was kind and business-like during the discussion, and I found some insight that I felt was of value.

You might want to take a test drive on this new way to build your corporate and personal brand by using your brain and your voice on Clubhouse. Want to be invited into this new networking app? Let me know, and I will open the door.

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