|Voice is an incredibly powerful tool. By listening to inflection and tone we can interpret intention, and get a pretty good idea of the type of person who’s speaking. Are they intelligent? Confident? Friendly? It allows us to gauge someone’s personality and make a decision as to whether we connect with the speaker.|
So naturally, I was excited about getting started on Clubhouse, an audio-based social media app quickly gaining buzz among young professionals, influencers, and even celebrities like Oprah.
I see so much potential in building community in Clubhouse and in networking, that I’ll be posting about it a couple of different times so stay tuned! First, I want to offer some tips on getting started on Clubhouse – basics so you can jump in with confidence.
What is Clubhouse?
Part virtual conference and part free-wheeling podcast, Clubhouse brings together people of similar interests, allowing them to discuss any topic in virtual rooms. Panels of experts can host a room, or you can host one about the latest episode of Dr. Who. Topics run the gamut!
At last check, membership was just up over a million and growing all the time. It’s currently only available for IOS users, and because the app is still in beta, membership is by invitation only.
I know, I know, you’ve already got LinkedIn, IG, Twitter…all the platforms! But early adopters have a lot to gain here. Unlike a Facebook group, Clubhouse offers immediate feedback and real interactions.
Here are a few tips to help get you in getting started on Clubhouse.
While the app is in beta, invitations are given out in limited quantities to current users, who are encouraged to pass them out. Business groups on Facebook are a good place to start looking for an invite (some have even been hosting “invitation trains”).
But if you can’t get your hands on one right away, you can still download the app and claim your username. This way your ideal name will be available to you when you do join. The Clubhouse website indicates that it should be open to a wider audience “soon”.
Getting Started on Clubhouse
- Get Settled
Once in, be sure to get your Instagram and/or Twitter claimed and write up a complete bio. If there’s a limit on characters, I haven’t seen one yet!
- Follow people
Pick some interests so Clubhouse knows what kind of rooms to suggest. Follow your friends and search for more people who follow your interests.
- Join a Room
Find a room that looks interesting and tap to join. The app is actually straightforward to use and quite intuitive. You’ll be on mute when you enter a room, as only the room moderators can call people up to the “stage” to speak. If you have something to say, raise your hand by tapping the hand icon on the bottom right of your screen.
- Clubhouse Hierarchy
You’ll note a “hierarchy” of room participants are displayed. On top are the moderators and those who have been called up to the stage. The next tier are listeners who are followed by the speakers, and then “others in the room”, in the order that they joined the room. Newbies all have a party popper on their avatar that stays for about a week.
- Ping Your Followers
When you’re in a really great room that you think a friend/follower would want to join, click the + sign on your screen. You’ll get a list of friends you can instantly invite to the room.
- Be courteous by muting your microphone when you’re called up to the stage. When it’s your turn to speak, give a quick thanks, intro, and what you do, and then launch into your question or comment. Mute when you’re not speaking.
- If you’re onstage and you like something someone else is saying, you can “clap” virtually by muting and unmuting your mic to make it flash.
When you decide you’re ready to moderate your own room, you can begin one on a whim, or schedule your room in advance so others can add it to their calendar – the choice is yours! When you’re the moderator/host, be sure to…
- Introduce yourself and say what you do as quickly and succinctly as you can, and repeat every so often for the people who have just tuned in. “Hi, I’m Mat and I’m the CEO of Freelance on Fire. Today we’re talking about finding your niche as a freelancer…
- Pass the mic around, allowing people to introduce themselves and ask questions. Be mindful of creating a respectful space where others aren’t interrupted and where diversity is respected.
- Don’t be sales-y. Clubhouse is about connecting, not using a room to hawk a service or product.
Finally, as with all social media apps, Clubhouse has its ills. It’s been criticized for lack of content moderation but it has made some adjustments over time, like giving people the opportunity to block other users, and report abusive behavior. And people aren’t always who they say they are. Be sure to do your due diligence, remain skeptical, and report abusive behavior.
Hopefully, these tips have helped you feel confident getting started on Clubhouse. To read more about how to use Clubhouse for networking, check out tips in my blog post HERE.
I look forward to connecting with you in Clubhouse; I’m @matcasner and I invite you to follow me and join in my upcoming rooms where I’ll be talking about freelancing and fielding any and all questions you have about your own freelancing business!
Want more freelancing tips on the go? Freelance on Fire is getting ready to launch a Marketing for Freelancers podcast. Click here and never miss an episode!