What is Clubhouse? A three-minute guide for Gen Z brands

a woman smiles while listening to headphones

There’s a new social media app in town. Learn more about this invite-only, audio-first app that puts real time interaction at its heart.

What is it?

In short, Clubhouse is a platform for live podcasting with an exclusive twist. Members can tap into conversations, which function like panel discussions, interviews, radio shows and more – depending on who’s hosting. Topics are wide-ranging, from science and tech to careers and pop culture. To tap into a topic, you “join a room” – where there is a range of speakers, moderators, organisers and listeners. But you have to be there. If you miss out on a session in real time, there’s no way to hear it back afterwards.

There is a catch – anyone who joins Clubhouse has to do so after an invite from someone already on the platform.

Are Gen Zs using it?

Yes. Surprisingly, for a generation that loves visual apps like TikTok, YouTube and Instagram, this audio-first format works really well for Gen Zs. As well as being strongly represented across the various rooms, there’s a specific Gen Z club. It meets weekly at 5pm on Thursdays. It’s well worth tuning in – last week, they were discussing their generation’s relationship to retail.

Will it take off?

Already, Gen Zs are embracing the app. It’s a social media platform that they’ve witnessed the arrival of – not one they’ve inherited from older generations – so they can do it their way. There’s still an element of exclusivity to this invite-only platform (and it’s currently only available on iPhone, with apps for other smartphones in the works). It’s more LinkedIn than TikTok, but with live audio content at its heart, it speaks (quite literally) to Gen Zs authenticity.

How can brands get involved?

Clubhouse is a fast-growing social network but at present, it’s still in its infancy. The content is based around careers, side-hustles and professional passion – and at the moment brands should view it more as an educational space where they can listen to Gen Z and understand what makes them tick in their own words.

a screen with the clubhouse app open on it

That said, there’s no telling what opportunities might develop in time. The app is yet to figure out how to monetise, but it’s well worth getting your foot in the Clubhouse door. The future holds infinite opportunity, from content curation and networking to sponsored rooms and influencer opportunities. At present, though, your best bet is to listen, explore, and take notes.

The Student Shopping Report is now live. Check in with how students are shopping in your vertical and align their habits to your strategy.

Gen Z and the Future of Ecommerce

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