Clubhouse For Sports
You may have heard about it. Weird if not. It’s the new kid on the block. Everybody is talking about it. Audio rules.
It’s iOS only and invite only for now (as of Feb 22).
If you need to know more check out this The Guardian piece:
Clubhouse app: what is it and how do you get an invite to the exclusive audio app?
Part talkback radio, part conference call, part Houseparty, Clubhouse is a social networking app based on audio-chat…
Beyond the buzz and beyond the smorgasbord of opinions I want to share my experience until now fully understanding that this is subjective and that the app is still developing its first steps (I joined the Townhall last night for updated on their product roadmap).
Firstly, I believe we need to recognize Audio as an extremely growing sector in the media consumption space, mostly driven by the Podcast phenomenon, combined with the pandemic effect of higher media consumption in general.
I stared two weeks ago a survey on LinkedIn with some quite radical options to understand what our business was viewing this as, the result is mixed with a strong propension for the “just another fad” opinion.
I am not so sure about that. Not saying ClubHouse per-se but this way of live audio interaction seems something that was missing from the current ecosystem and as any good idea it was weird we did not come up with it before.
So I will risk and say:
“I believe that ClubHouse-style experiences will stay and become another media/social channel for which even rights (content and sponsor) will be carved out in the future.”
My experience, as someone that is often on stage, is really intriguing and I have found a lot of great conversations with quite iconic figures in different areas, Sports Tech, Media, News, Radio, Music, Entertainment, Leadership, Inclusion & Diversity.
I have mostly used it as an innovative conference platform, and have been brought up on stage multiple times and had quite some inetresting conversation with high profile talents in various areas.
What are the upsides? From what I have experienced:
- Supportive and participative environment
The added value and endorphine rush you get when you are pushed on stage is part of the listening experience. The level of kindness is above average compared to other social platforms. The level of authenticity seems also good to me.
- Access to talent
Quite impressed by the level of people I have been able to listen to in less than one month. Very often
In two ways: in one sense finding great content by randomly scrolling through rooms, but even more the fact that in some cases I saw quite important people (to the subject matter) join a room and being brought on stage, resulting in a great room much better then it started.
What are the problems for now?
- Discovery — not so easy to find something you want to hear or participate for now at all times
- Noise — the level of trash is growing with smartass people polluting and there are clear privacy and safety worries
- Monetization — how will people monetize this? Will it be on-platform or off-platform?
What can it bring to sports? What can be the use cases?
- Watch party
I have already listened to some rooms focused on commenting on live games with group of friends. Seems an obvious one.
- VIP Commentary of live games/events
The same but moderated and with VIP guests on stage while audience would be more passive (with notable exception). This could be done by influencers, media, but also by clubs.
- Experts chats
More relaxed and on topic rooms where a specific subject is discussed after the fact
- Players/Athletes interviews and chats
Having direct access to Players/Athletes/Coaches with moderated rooms in a friendly environment
Less obvious but the platform could be used to have townhalls — i.e. asking feedback to the community — on specific sports products and experiences
UPDATE: First evidence. Internazionale Milano in Serie A did their first official ClubHouse room before the Milan Derby with A.C. Milan (they ended up winning 3–0).
The eve of the #DerbyMilano on Clubhouse with a Nerazzurri room
"We know full well that the buzz felt throughout the city in anticipation of this week's #DerbyMilano is a special one…
A big question is what have clubs already agreed with Players?
Have they already established rules on clubhouse?
What’s your take?