Amid the rising discussion around newer audio social tools, and Twitter Spaces specifically, it seems, in many respects, like Clubhouse is now taking a back seat.
The much-hyped app hit download peaks earlier in the year, but has now simmered down, with its broader opening, shifting out of invite-only beta, helping it reach new audiences, but also reducing its exclusivity, and lessening the cool-factor of the platform.
Does that mean that Clubhouse is on the way out, or is there still opportunity in Clubs that many are now overlooking?
The only way to know for sure is to get involved – and if you are looking to pay the Clubhouse a visit, its new info and insights hub will help you get a better understanding of the app, and the potential opportunities of its various Rooms and features.
Clubhouse’s ‘Creator Commons’ provides helpful insights into all aspects of Clubhouse usage, and how you can boost your presence.
As you can see here, the info hub features various elements, and includes detailed overviews of exactly how Clubs and Rooms work, and how you can get involved in each.
There are also notes on brand usage specifically, and while Clubhouse doesn’t provide analytics data (which it is working on), there are pointers on how you can track your in-app performance, and what elements you should be looking at.
There’s also a ‘Brands and Monetization’ overview, which includes info on payments and sponsors in Rooms.
It’s a helpful resource for those considering the app, and its potential for marketing – and with the holiday period coming up, now may well be the best time to examine the opportunity of the app, and whether it could help to boost your branding efforts.
But the bigger question, of course, is can Clubhouse continue to grow, as competition rises in the space.
The original social audio platform, Clubhouse quickly rose to 2 million active users earlier this year, before slowing up as copycat options like Twitter Spaces started to infiltrate the market. Clubhouse downloads accelerated again upon the release of its Android app, and the aforementioned expansion of app access, but as Spaces continues to evolve, and Twitter eyes the next stage of Spaces development, interest in Clubhouse does appear to have waned significantly, particularly in western markets.
But still, there are opportunities.
Right now, Clubhouse is reportedly sitting on around 12m users, while it’s hosting some 600,000 rooms per day, up from 300,000 back in May. The app has seen particularly significant growth in India, where Android is clearly the dominant OS, and where users have welcomed the open opportunity of live discussion, partnered with the more data-friendly audio-only approach.
Twitter has struggled to expand its presence in the Indian market (currently on 22m Indian users), so Spaces is seemingly not as significant a threat to Clubhouse in the region, while Twitter has also come under more intense scrutiny from Indian officials of late in regards to the content that it allows, and removes, from its site.
Spaces, then, could be a challenging element for Twitter to boost in any major way, which could see Clubhouse benefit – but it does also seem like only a matter of time before Indian regulators also take more interest in what’s happening in Clubhouse as well.
At the same time, Facebook has more than 340 million Indian users, and the gradual expansion of its Audio Rooms option could also pose a challenge, which may stifle Clubhouse’s growth.
It’s difficult, then, to predict what the future holds for Clubhouse. Clearly, based on its various promotions, India is now a key market, and it could be that Clubhouse is able to carve a niche for itself in the region, and become a more significant, enduring platform through that effort.
But it’s still too early to say, and with the bigger players continuing to invest in their own audio social options, it will be an increasingly steep hill to climb, but maybe not insurmountable for the app, if it can find its fit.
Its Creator Commons hub is another key element in facilitating broader growth, and encouraging more usage – and maybe, through strengthening its ties, and tools for creators, that could help Clubhouse solidify its presence.
You can check out the Clubhouse ‘Creator Commons’ hub here.