What Clubhouse’s opening means for its future as a marketing platform

As Regina George’s mom once (probably) said, “What’s the 411 on Clubhouse? What has everybody been up to? What’s the hot gossip?”

  • Last week, the app said it’s officially exiting beta. That means Clubhouse is no longer a VIP section—you don’t have to know an insider to get in.
  • The news comes as Clubhouse users in many parts of the US are returning to live events—you know, places where you hear people speak IRL rather than listen to them through your iPhone (or Android—Clubhouse is finally available there, too).

Why it matters: In the early winter months of 2021, marketers were starting to wonder if Clubhouse would be the next hot marketing platform (companies such as cognac brand Martell and Cash App tried it out). So we caught up with a few to see how they’re feeling about the app’s longevity in light of its latest update.

Some marketers think in-person events pose a challenge: “They have way higher tailwinds with IRL experiences returning,” House of Wise founder Amanda Goetz told Marketing Brew. “The defensibility and listenership will come from the talent they can secure (similar to how Spotify got Call Her Daddy and Joe Rogan).”

But others think the beta exit = a silver lining: “Clubhouse’s beta ending as we head into the return of in-person events is pretty lucky timing if you ask me,” Allyssa Eclarin, director of product marketing at Postal.io, told us. “I think they could capture an audience if they start sponsoring or reaching out to certain companies to have Clubhouse as their preferred audio space for in-person events.” 

Thank you, next: Other marketers think focusing the conversation on Clubhouse misses the point. “When I first started using Clubhouse at the end of 2020, it felt like every brand and marketer had to be prepared to incorporate it into the 2021 strategy,” marketing consultant Chantelle Marcelle told us. Now, she feels like social audio as a whole—not specifically Clubhouse—is a marketing channel. 

The Twitter spaces of it all: “Twitter Spaces has totally taken the wind out of Clubhouse’s sails now. So feelings have sort of changed,” said Aubrey Strobel, head of communications at Lolli, who spoke highly of Clubhouse to Marketing Brew in February. “I think people are more available on Twitter. They don’t want to be inconvenienced by going to another app.”

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