Does Red-Hot Clubhouse Have Social Staying Power?
Clubhouse is red-hot. Everyone wants to be on Clubhouse.
It’s the right product for the right time.
People are feeling lonely and isolated. They’re hunkering down and bored with Netflix, board games, books, and puzzles.
Clubhouse is an easy distraction (aka rabbit hole). If you can get an invitation, it is easy to connect with like-minded people; people who share your interests.
It’s one way to explain the rabid enthusiasm for Clubhouse; people are happily spending hours talking and talking.
The question is “why?”. Why so much time on Clubhouse when they could/should be working, exercising, spending time with friends and family, etc.?
I mean, there’s apparently a Clubhouse room for marketers at 10 p.m. on Fridays.
For now, Clubhouse is an easy way to feeling socially connected.
But what happens in six months when we get to meet with our friends and colleagues and some of us go back to work?
Will there be time to listen or as much of a need for Clubhouse?
Don’t get me wrong, Clubhouse has value and it will become a popular social media platform. I see it as a place for thought leadership, communities, forums, and podcasting.
But Clubhouse, in many ways, is having a moment.
The hype is being driven by a brilliant marketing strategy (invite-only) and a small army of evangelists doing a great job of spreading the word.
You have to believe there’s a huge case of FOMO happening. People who passed on the early days of TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat will not do the same thing with Clubhouse.
Call me ambivalent. How about you?
More: Clubhouse just announced it has raised another round of venture capital that would raise its valuation to $1-billion.
This is a 10-person startup that:
- Makes no revenue
- Doesn’t have an Android app, although it could be coming soon
- Remains invite-only (with two million current registered users, not all of them active)
Andreessen Horowitz, which has been involved in both financing rounds, writes that “the audio innovation of the next decade will rival what we’ve seen in video apps over the past few years,” moving from passive podcast/audiobook listening to more interactive formats.
My prediction: Clubhouse will likely be acquired for $2-billion to $3-billion this year by Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, or Spotify. In many respects, it reminds me of Instagram, a 10-person startup acquired by Facebook for $1-billion, which turned out to be a bargain.
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