Ask somebody now if they know what the Clubhouse app is and 20 per cent or so, will know what you’re talking about. Ask again in six months’ time and we predict that that number will be nearer 100 per cent. Having grown their user base from two million to more than 10 million since January, Clubhouse is set to be the next big social media app. And with it currently being invite only, car dealers across the globe should be doing everything they can to get their hands on that all important VIP invitation.
Since launching back in 2020, Clubhouse has been steadily growing. Now valued at $1billion, Clubhouse has been compared to former start-ups Uber and Airbnb, with demand for this app being so hot, people are actually selling invitations.
Why join the club?
Let’s start with the basics. What is Clubhouse? It’s a hybrid of conference calls, live podcasts and audio-only mass presentations. Users can listen in on conversations, interviews and discussions with likeminded people, whether that be on a personal or professional level. And with the added layer of exclusivity, users can’t help but feel a sense of importance and elitism. Think of it as a member-only club but at your fingertips.
When users join, they can choose topics that interest them, like cars, for example. Surely this tool makes Clubhouse the dream for specialist industries, like the automotive. Forget cold-calling, or those time-consuming repetitive emails to potential customers, Clubhouse offers you access to millions of users who have already expressed an interest in your product – cars. With users from across the globe all using Clubhouse, it offers you a virtual platform to engage and interact with worldwide customers at just the click of a button. Clubhouse gives car dealers the perfect opportunity to showcase and promote their brand, product and service.
Remember, we’ve spent the past year utilising every single digital communications tool possible, due to the pandemic, so it makes sense that businesses are adding virtual marketing into their strategy moving forward.
Get ahead, get Clubhouse
With Clubhouse being the perfect platform for businesses to showcase products, network the industry and ultimately make sales, this is a must-have for all businesses; and the automotive industry is no exception. iPhone users only, at the moment – don’t worry Android fans, founders have said they are working on this – can reserve their preferred username and await their much-anticipated unique invite link. A top tip for anybody thinking of getting the app: try and grab your desired username as soon as you can – especially if you’re going to use Clubhouse under your brand name – because once it’s gone, it’s gone.
If you use Clubhouse as part of your marketing strategy, it has the potential to make your car dealership boom. But be smart and be clever, to get noticed. Remember to think of Clubhouse as a marketing tool, not just a social media platform.
This is your chance to get ahead of the game. Invest your time in building your following now before the app becomes non-exclusive and overused. Not only will you be able to build a following that fellow car dealers simply won’t be able to compete with, but the current exclusivity of Clubhouse means you will be able to form a relationship with some of the users, securing their loyalty to your brand.
When users open the Clubhouse app, they will find themselves in a virtual hallway, with hundreds of public rooms available for them to enter. As soon as users enter a room, the audio automatically turns on.
At any given time, there are a few thousand rooms open for conversation. Conversations become just like a conference call, but with only some of the people in the virtual room talking, while the others listen. The conversations are all live and once they end, as does the room, similar to a phone call.
The size of these rooms vary, from big keynote type virtual events, to large panel rooms and smaller conversations. As a car dealer, you could simply listen in on talks, be an interactive audience member, or even host your own room.
Of course, one of the biggest draws for businesses using Clubhouse at the moment, is it gives them the chance to get in front of the world’s most prominent business leaders and influencers. Some of the people you can get access to would usually seem near to impossible in the real world. Imagine being able to interact with those clients you have always dreamed of.
If you want to host your own room, then we would suggest starting off by partnering up with other people within your industry, who have a bigger following than you. When your partners come on stage, everyone who follows them will get a notification and could potentially enter the room, leading to a new follower for you – and perhaps, a new customer. How easy does that sound?
When you create a room, you become the host, which in essence, means you control who comes on ‘stage’ to speak, you can mute people and give people the role of moderator. Users who are in each room can ‘raise their hand’ to speak. You can also create private rooms, which means giving users an even greater level of exclusivity. Private rooms let members have discussions with one another, or better yet, allow you to deliver private information, or special offers, that you don’t want to share with the world.
Creating a club
If you start using Clubhouse as a car dealer, then it’s a no brainer, make use of the ‘clubs’ feature. While users can enter rooms, they can also become part of clubs too. A club’s public room is open to anyone and anyone who follows your club will get a notification when you create or open a public room.
Making the most of this feature is where car dealers could really utilise the app. Think of it as creating topic-specific virtual networking events, helping you to directly engage with your target audience. And remember, people who are in your group will most likely already have an interest in your club’s topic, for example, cars – or the automotive industry.
Your club doesn’t just have to have the one admin either. You could have multiple admins, who host multiple rooms between them regularly throughout the day. Which not only means more exposure for your car dealership but also means you can distribute marketing tasks.
Communication is a two-way system
While Clubhouse presents itself with the perfect opportunity to distribute information, it also provides a platform to gain customer feedback.
Perhaps you want to know which brand your target customers are most interested in? Maybe you are keen to know their thoughts on a new model? There might be a particular feature you want to a reaction on? If you have Clubhouse, then hosting a room is the answer. Making this even more attractive is surely the fact that it can be done on a shoestring? Forget big budget market research, creating specific and sometimes impromptu focus – group style rooms offer a cost-effective solution.
Marketing, done the old-fashioned way
Despite it being the hottest new phone ap, Clubhouse will see the return of the most understated marketing tool there is: word of mouth. Combine new marketing techniques with old by empowering your employees to promote your car dealership across the app using word of mouth. You could also engage with current or previous customers on Clubhouse and use their word of mouth to your advantage too.
Of course one of the most obvious uses of Clubhouse for car dealers is the fact that offers a worldwide platform to showcase your product or service. Car dealers can connect with all sorts of audiences on one platform, giving them the chance to engage with everyone in one place.
Top tip, try not to make it all about the hard sell. Share your brand’s story, give your brand – and you – a personality. Every user has the option to remove themselves from a room discretely by simply pressing the ‘leave quietly’ button. Start conversation, engage with your audience and sell your products and services subtly.
If you’re worried that Clubhouse removes the visual element of marketing, then perhaps you could incorporate the app specifically in the initial stages of your marketing strategy. Use Clubhouse to engage with your target audience, before directing them to your social media channels, websites or online visual content. There are video tool brands like SnapCell, who work specifically with automotive traders like car dealers to create engaging and eye-catching content, which will go hand-in-hand with your audio marketing on Clubhouse.
Clubhouse offers more than conversation. The app could also be used as an employment tool. Not only could car dealers use it to connect with potential employees but aspiring staff could use Clubhouse to seek out their next job.
Over the next few months, founders have insisted they will be adding features and tools to allow businesses to make money using Clubhouse. You might be able to charge people to join your club or, if you want to showcase the knowledge you have of the automotive industry, you could host paid-for question-and-answer sessions.
Brands with a budget are also starting to sponsor rooms. If you’re not in a position to sponsor, then perhaps your room could be sponsored.
Is it just a fad?
With the app developing rapidly, Clubhouse is definitely one to keep your eye on and better yet, get yourself an invite to. With features being added regularly, giving businesses the chance to create their own virtual conferences, Clubhouse should be explored. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t like the idea of being a member of an exclusive club? Download the app now and secure an invite while they’re still hot.
If you’re a dealer looking to pioneer the automotive industry, with forward-thinking technologies and marketing strategies, then arrange a SnapCell demo today. SnapCell is the leading automotive video tool, helping dealers to build rapport and trust, while maximizing sales.