Inside the sudden rise of a secretive new app called Clubhouse
Community Chat Weekly is a newsletter about building and growing communities, featuring collected tweets, posts and thoughts from various community managers.
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This week has gone by fast, can't believe it's Friday already. Here's an applicable quote:
“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen”
In uncertain, fast-moving times like these, it’s more important than ever for all of us to keep our heads up – especially in the community management profession where we interact with so many others on a daily basis. So if you’re reading this, remember to take a deep breath. Recharge. Re-center. Laugh. Smile 😊
And if you need a little outside help with the smiling thing, our friend Jake Mckee recently launched a community manager comic series that chronicles the adventures of community managers seeking sanity in the midst of the global pandemic.
This is a time for the role of Community Managers and the entire concept of community to be seen as the critical part of business strategy that we all know it is. We’ve been doing so many of these (suddenly newly) critical skills for years, but many of our colleagues are just now catching up.
We have an opportunity, even (especially?) in the midst of these difficult times, to showcase the principles of community that we’ve been preaching for so long. And showcasing these principles can have a significant impact in how the world navigates this pandemic.
Jake McKee's comic series on community management during a pandemic.
Check it out here!
Move aside video and chat apps, there's a new communication platform in town – and no thumbs or eyes are necessary to participate. It's called Clubhouse, and their tagline is Forget the calendar invite, just jump into a conversation.
According to TechCrunch, the app allows you to "spontaneously jump into voice chat rooms. You see the unlabeled rooms of all the people you follow on Twitter, and you can join to talk or just listen along, milling around to find what interests you." Sounds a lot like Discord's popular voice chat feature.
Clubhouse blew up this weekend on VC Twitter as people scrambled for exclusive invites, humblebragged about their membership, or made fun of everyone’s FOMO. For now, there’s no public app or access. The name Clubhouse perfectly captures how people long to be part of the in-crowd.
What is VC Twitter? Oh, that's a rabbit hole you'll have to go down on your own 😬
And the craziest thing, is that the app isn't even on the public app store yet. The Community Chat team has had close to a dozen people ask us this week what Clubhouse is, and if/how they could get an invite. (We wish we were cool enough to be part of the invite-only crowd, we're just here to write about it and keep you informed!)
Clubhouse is also a fascinating case study for how a community tool can gain widespread adoption by starting with a niche, passionate core group of influential members (ie. Venture Capitalists) and having them create public FOMO on your behalf.
See more in Atlassian's community year-in review here.
As community managers everywhere think about being more data-driven, see if you can borrow a page from Ali's approach. Behind the sleek infographics is an emphasis on how important it is to being metrics driven as a community professional, and make sure that any metrics always connect back to a business goal and strategy.
We’re hosting a virtual hangout for community builders every week, covering a different topic or discussion point each time. Next week we will be talking about all the new community tools and platforms that have launched in the past few months!
A handful of recommended readings from the past week.
Conductor and audience-based communities (4 min read)
A musical conductor’s job is to artfully pull music from an orchestra, and a digital-conductor does the same but for information and conversation. According to Cody Brown, "conductor social networks" have two core features: The real time ability for a conductor to drive an audience to whatever space they want them to be in, and a baton or podium that allows them to communicate, listen and keep order however they choose. Read more about this framework for thinking about this emergent kind of community network.
Product-Led Communities Need Picks and Shovels (3 min read)
A product-led community is what happens when a company has a valued product or service, as well as an authentic, thriving community at its core. As product-led community startups continue to multiply, they are driving growth in another area: tools that build, support, and monetize communities. Community Chat member Stephen Wremple dives deep into the future of the product-led community ecosystem in this must read!
Guide to hiring a community manager (3 min read)
So, you need to hire an online community manager. That’s a tall order, no matter what your industry or company size. Carrie Melissa Jones has worked with, hired, and coached hundreds of community managers throughout her career – learn her best practices from this brief guide!