Clubhouse: the next THING in the social media world?

Everybody want in, only a few are in - and it's MEGA!

On Jan. 23, 2021, the Tagesschau takes stock after one week of Clubhouse in Germany: The new Clubhouse platform is a consultation with style. The Tagesspiegel even locates the hype around the audio app as a secret weapon for top politicians in the super election year on 22.01.2021 despite major concerns about data protection. The FAZ reports on Jan. 23, 2021, about the first legal dispute in connection with app use. Sounds like an expensive, well-orchestrated marketing strategy.


The longing for exchange, for togetherness, for party is otherwise probably rather semi-dull in January after weeks of exhausting family gluttony and semi-forced New Year's Eve mood:

This January, everything is different.

The new year has started with the handbrake on: the x.te lockdown isolates us in our own four walls and does not allow the return to the usual beige office routine.

And: CLUBHOUSE is in the house.

The "Clubhouse" virus, which came directly from Silicon Valley at virtually the same time as the Corona pandemic last spring, was both a question and an answer:

The question: after Facebook, Instagram and TikTok and the many others, do we really need yet another social network?

The answer: YES.

With the December lockdown, many people apparently had a lot of time to roam the colorful social media world online - traveling was not possible - and poof: Clubhouse has now been in Germany since January 2021. Since a few hours also in Switzerland and Austria. In North and South America and Africa, it seems at least in parts established and ebbed, in Asia rather non-existent.

By the way, Clubhouse does not have a so-called icon or "real logo". After a grooving Spotify listener with a guitar in retro black and white, the Faficon is now adorned with a perky looking hippster with a peaked cap in the same look.

But is Clubhouse really another social network?

An attempt at a description: In fact, it's nothing more than "The Hype House," a luxurious mansion in which TikTok stars lived for several weeks together with "BigBrother" to multiply their respective ...K followers. Online only...

It also reminds on the one hand of podcasts that went through the roof with the lockdowns with their listeners, but on the other hand not, because on Clubhouse everything is life and interactive and not canned like on podcasts.

Then again, it's more like 24/7 Zoom conferences, where every participant has blanked out with a still image, is too weak to switch off, but at least cleans the cat's litter box on the side. In any case, with its private rooms, it is at least as close to real life as WhatsApp, Telegram, Threema and co or any dating platform (like Tinder, Parship and co).

Or is it simply a 365-day international online conference where yoga gurus, business angels, top speakers, preachers, politicians, journalists, celebrities, experts and artists party it up? Those who were just on the online stage are now listeners, those who just spontaneously tuned in at Lidl are suddenly "life on stage." Influencers with xK followers on TikTok, Instagram and the like start their 1-minute introductions with "I've only been here since yesterday and don't know my way around yet. But love to my 12 followers..."

This makes Clubhouse charming and authentic.

Because Clubhouse is exclusive.

Marketing strategists call it "artificial scarcity." On the user side, psychologists call it "FoMO" (The fear of missing out - the fear of missing a social interaction and then not being there). In fact, Clubhouse is only available to iPhone users, and only if they receive a direct they receive a direct invitation via SMS from a private contact who is IN the House.

The exclusivity may cause a touch of human warmth to waft through the Clubhouse at first - after all, somehow everyone knows everyone here from the offline world.

But maybe it is nothing more and nothing less than another ingenious move from the Apple universe: an "exclusive network" for exclusive customers as the latest feature for the next iPhone generation - who knows ...

Fun Fact: You only have 2 "Invites" to give out when you are DRIN (later on 2-3 more).

So you think twice about who you invite from your contacts. Clubhouse helps you to make your own decision by sorting your contacts not alphabetically, but according to how many contacts they would potentially have in Clubhouse - because a contact is only worth as much as it brings further contacts. The gray networking mouse or the mom, who is also inhibited to activate the rare invite, might not be the first choice.

Another fun fact: Rumor has it that "MoF's" (people without friends) can buy the rare "Invites" at auction on ebay.

AND: The more active you are in Clubhouse, the more you can invite.

This is then again like in real life.

And yes, it works like in real life: Together is still the best way to be lonely. The day starts with the exchange of silence and spiritual thoughts over morning coffee and the last song ideas of the night played live on the piano.mThose who have otherwise spent their cup of coffee getting upset about the neighbors, staring holes in the air with a lazy morning talker, or having to endure a torrent of stock market gibberish, will get their money's worth here and from now on start the day with a smile. After the shower, you wind your way through the time management and planning meetings. At lunchtime, they meet with politicians in the government district to discuss the Corona measures, network with a group of startups and business angels at the late lunch, and find out how to make better use of Clubhouse, gets involved in a parents' group on homeschooling, and then jumps back and forth between "WineTasting" and "Wine and Talk" - after various other alcoholic rounds of talks, it's off to overseas and the whole thing starts all over again...

Everybody can post as many events and talks as he wants.

The choice of topics is absolutely open. There are only a few community rules - many things remain vague. No wonder that again and again very one-sided opinions up to hate and agitation come on stage. The fact that nothing is recorded and everything is relatively anonymous without video makes people brave - the spoken word is fleeting and what I say here today I can demonize there tomorrow. Diversity helps, but it can't regulate everything. A

fter all, Clubhouse requires the civil name at the entrance door - whether and how it is checked and punished - Who knows.

"The German Clubs" also feel a bit stiffer in terms of conversation culture - but are slowly settling down to a relaxed startup-hippster level.

So Clubhouse is there: Do you have to go in there now? And if YES - what for?

If you feel isolated, if you need to exchange ideas with people in a similar situation - from students to company owners, if you like to "talk" as much as you can and are more the AUDIO type - Clubhouse is an absolute enrichment for you, especially in the lockdown. Not having to put yourself in the spotlight with embellished pictures and expertise, in case of doubt with paid expert help - like on Insta, LinkedIn and Co - is totally relaxing. It's refreshing and captures the Lockdown spirit.

Viva la sweatpants and tousled hair!

It's refreshing that top speakers and authors, ministers and celebrities are on board.

With Mr. Böhmermann, Mr. Thelen and Mrs. Bär there were already illustrious rounds. Yesterday's legendary Friday talk with around 5,000 participants (in GERMAN!) with Mr. Thelen on the question of whether Clubhouse will survive.

Mr. Thelen says no, because with the strategy of shortage the range would be too small for e.g. Dieter Bohlen - but admits that he also mistakenly thought TikTok to be less promising. That Mr. Thelen is not on his turf here becomes clear when he refers to Clubhouse as "radio" and it takes more than three sentences for Gen Z's Clubhouse host to understand that Mr. Tehlen means audio by "radio."

In fact, Clubhouse has made strong gains at least since making the leap across the pond and is currently valued at about $100 million. Despite, or perhaps because of, the shortage. The capital, as always, is data.

What for?

Those who can experience Clubhouse as a private and semi-professional exchange enrichment will get their money's worth.

Those who want to use Clubhouse to expand their reach and visibility, and perhaps even generate leads and business through it, should bring patience and a willingness to get to know Clubhouse and not misunderstand it as a LinkedIn-Radio-Insta-TikTok-Podcast knock-off. For example, visibility as described above right now is not primarily achieved by the insider community for influencers but by the fact that you can tell outsiders "I'm IN."

Certainly, offline formats of the law firm such as the "Corona Update" for (potential) clients or expert roundtables can be quickly and easily relocated to the Clubhouse. Formats such as free legal advice for the needy, however, will probably not. Here, at the very least, a "2 way" solution will be the best at the start.

Consequently, one of today's Saturday Talks gave TopSpeakers and Influencers a stage to discuss: in the future, will there be a need for special "audio speakers" (2021) among the TopSpeakers (who are usually pillars of strength on the offline stage) after the special technology-affine "online speakers" (2020) and will Clubhouse replace the unimaginatively conceived online-offline conferences, which simply wanted to hold their offline event formats online somehow out of necessity with little investment in 2020. The speaker community says yes and already describes surprisingly exactly what the successful speaker of the future is. These are Clubhouse's finest hours.

Does Google honor contributions on Clubhouse? Rather not. Keywords and meta description as well as linking are not possible. But at the same time it offers room for error, because nothing is more embarrassing than the 10 year old youtube - video for influencers/speakers/experts, which is still circulating somewhere on Google.

What's the point of being a lawyer?

The political discussions on the topics of the day with the political decision makers are inspiring and a feast for every dedicated lawyer - without having to go through the face check at ARD and ZDF. The open discussions on the economic situation, especially in an international context, of startups, investors, experts, mangers and journalists are at least helpful for the legal everyday life to be able to currently advise clients optimally - can lead to profiling and finally to visibility and business if more active and time intensive.

The dedicated participation of lawyers from very different fields and backgrounds can make Clubhouse a "Better Place" if we have enough civil courage and use our core competence of communication to directly verbally curb brash fellow citizens.

The first exercise in this took place on Wednesday, when a right-wing influencer and a journalist engaged in a repartee on the topic of "Lügenpresse," with recordings of the discussion immediately appearing on Facebook and Twitter, and the whole thing ultimately ending in a court battle for revocation, as the FAZ reported on Jan. 23, 2021.

Does the world of law firms and lawyers continue to turn even without Clubhouse? Yes.

But if you can overlook (justified) doubts about data protection and the business model and, for once, just get involved in a new gaming meadow - then it increases the daily fun and gamification factor immensely, at least in the beginning.

Conclusion: CLUBHOUSE is' cool. And can be a possible perfect answer to "Lockdown" next to "42".

The Tagesschau takes stock on 23.01.2021 after one week of Clubhouse in Germany: New platform Clubhouse is consulting hour with style.

On 22.01.2021, the Tagesspiegel locates the hype around the audio app as a secret weapon for top politicians in the super election year, despite major concerns about data protection.

The FAZ reports on the legal dispute on revocation on 23.01.2021.

More on the topics of personal branding and marketing can be found on this website.



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