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If your finger is on the pulse, you’ve already heard the buzz about Clubhouse. Strictly invite-only, the hot new social media app includes venture capitalists, tech elite, celebrities and influencers among its ranks. Celebrities are using the drop-in audio app to bridge the artist-fan divide — Kevin Hart famously crashed the room “Is Kevin Hart Funny?” — and notable entrepreneurs like Elon Musk have been known to spontaneously join conversations related to their ventures. As the buzz continues, a growing number of Clubhouse users are entering their next phase with the platform: monetization.
For those who aren’t yet on Clubhouse, the initial challenge is getting an invite. But once clearing that hurdle, more users than ever are focused on monetization: getting in ahead of the curve, consistently engaging and positioning themselves to be “everywhere” when the rest of the market catches up. One success story is Isis Djata, a filmmaker now known as Clubhouse’s Number One Moderator. After initially joining the app in December 2020 to meet other filmmakers, she has leveraged an active presence, and strong moderation skills, to build a five-figure income. She has moderated for Clubhouse stages that include Grant and Elena Cardone, Randi Zuckerberg and Daymond John.
If you’re ready to join the growing number of users generating a steady revenue stream from Clubhouse, start with these six steps.
1. Get on the platform
Since Clubhouse launched in April 2020, invites have become an increasingly hot commodity. Demand for access has spawned a cottage industry for invites, which many users are eager to purchase for a fee. When Djata first learned about the app, she put out a post on Facebook offering to pay for an invite. When one didn’t materialize, she scoured her network for people working in publicity or media, eventually securing an invitation through a close acquaintance. The key takeaway? Don’t be afraid to ask your network for an invite. Then, pay it forward once you’re on the platform and have invites to share.
After you’ve secured your invite, download the app. For the time being, it’s still only available for iOS, though an Android version is rumored to be coming soon.
2. Create a compelling bio trailer
Your first action on Clubhouse should be creating an authentic bio. The initial three lines are the most critical because that’s what other users see when they tap on your profile image. “A great movie trailer entices people to watch the full movie,” Djata says. “The first three lines of your Clubhouse bio should function the same way. A compelling ‘trailer to your bio’ will encourage people to click ‘View Full Profile.’ ”
To craft a monetization-focused bio trailer, start by asking yourself four questions:
- Why are you on Clubhouse? Most people come to Clubhouse to promote a product or service, and there’s no shame in being transparent about that.
- Who are you? List two or three facts about yourself. Mix personal with professional; your Clubhouse trailer shouldn’t read like a condensed LinkedIn summary.
- What is your value proposition? Even in the invite-only stage, there are more than 7 million users on Clubhouse. Your trailer should communicate the value you — and only you — bring to the platform.
- What is your call-to-action? The majority of Clubhouse users all want the same thing: to gain followers. Be creative and use a “hook” to inspire action.
The first question provides clarity, says Djata, while the remaining three become the core elements of the trailer. Your answer to the question, “Who am I?” is the first line. Your value proposition is the second line, and your call-to-action is the third. “If you use this formula, people will follow you right then and there, before they even have to click ‘View Full Profile’ to watch the whole movie,” Djata explains.
However, that excitement factor shouldn’t come at the expense of authenticity. Clubhouse users are typically diligent about cross-checking what you’ve included in your bio. If they can’t verify the information in your profile, they won’t follow you. In some cases, you could even be called out on it while you’re in a room, a situation that could stop your monetization strategy dead in its tracks.
3. Master the functionality and join rooms
Gaining followers is key to monetizing Clubhouse. One of the easiest ways to increase your following is by contributing to the conversation going on in “rooms” — the app’s term for events. “With Clubhouse, the more people you follow, the more rooms become accessible to you,” Djata advises. “If someone follows you, it’s because they see you add value and want to figure out where you are on the app at all times.”
In an ideal world, the person who invites you to Clubhouse also onboards you. In reality, people are busy, so once you’re “in,” you need to teach yourself the app’s core functionality. That includes entering rooms, raising and lowering your hand and taking and leaving the stage.
When you first open the app, you’ll see the “hallway.” This is essentially a list of active rooms. Once you click on a room, you’ll be placed in one of three sections: “other,” “followed by speakers” and the stage. If you’re in the “followed by speakers” section, your profile will have more visibility than if you’re in the “other” area, which is the general audience. The stage is reserved for the host and moderator.
After you’ve taken your place in either the audience or the “followed by speakers” section, select the “Raise Your Hand” icon to join the conversation. The moderator will be notified and can choose whether to bring you up to the stage. Once there, unmute your microphone and share a question or insight. The moderator can kick people off the stage at any time, so contribute in a meaningful way that advances the discussion. Balance added value with a clear call to action so that others in the room know exactly why, and how, they should follow you.
Djata is proof that joining rooms can reap dividends. “When I first started going into rooms, I sat in the audience and listened,” she recalls. “Then, I slowly started getting on the stage and becoming active in conversations.” One day, she answered a question in a room where Grant Cardone was on the stage. He liked her answer and started following her. Seemingly overnight, her traction took off, and she began leveraging it by hosting her own rooms.
4. Start your own rooms
Many Clubhouse users hesitate to start rooms because they’re afraid that they won’t be able to fill the audience. However, small rooms can deliver significant value. Whereas many large rooms limit speaking time, smaller events can give hosts the space to connect with every audience member. These authentic, intimate conversations are key to converting your audience into customers.
“Once I started my own rooms, the people who followed me liked how I moderated my events,” says Djata. “Soon, they were asking, ‘Can you do that for me?’” Five months later, she’s generating a five-figure income as Clubhouse’s Number One Moderator, a business that sprung out of her active participation, her skills as a facilitator and her understanding of how to seize new opportunities that the app presents.
When starting a room, planning is key. Although celebrities and other notable Clubhouse hosts can sporadically launch an event and secure audience members, this tactic rarely works for most users. Schedule the room in Clubhouse’s event calendar, which will notify your followers immediately and again on event day. Then, watch for monetization opportunities as you host events.
5.Start a club
Clubs are interest-based groups that members can create and join via the Clubhouse iOS app. The ability to launch a club is currently only open to Clubhouse’s most active users. However, if you’re not yet among those ranks, follow the first treee steps in this article — and spend more time daily on the app — to boost your standing.
To start a club, scroll down to the bottom of the “Member of” section on your bio page. Click the “plus” sign to create your club. Then, flesh out your club’s profile with a memorable name, description, call-to-action and logo. Select “allow members” to ensure that current and new followers alike seize this opportunity to continually engage with your brand between events.
6. Leverage the power of relationship equity
Djata’s top piece of advice for monetizing Clubhouse is something that all entrepreneurs will recognize: Leverage the power of relationships. “If you don’t have relationship equity, no one will bring you onto their big stages,” she states. “Without relationships, how can you really soar?”
It’s not enough to simply host rooms where you amplify your message. To build real revenue on Clubhouse, users need to develop rapport. That means collaborating with others, contributing to the larger ecosystem in meaningful ways and using direct messages to address another person’s pain points — not delivering a blatant sales pitch. Because even on the nation’s hot new social media app, relationships are still key.