Using Clubhouse to Promote Talent and Show Authenticity

How I am using it to practice public speaking and be my authentic self

Photo by William Krause on Unsplash

Have you ever listened to someone on the radio or a podcast and for the life of you hoped that they could just hear you? Did you ever want to talk back and tell them what you think? Or maybe you’re like me — you wanted to talk about something you’re passionate about, but you didn’t want it to be a one-way-street monologue.

Every time I published an article, I imagined what it would feel like to get real-time feedback and a live audience with real questions and a real interest in my topic. I am thrilled to say that I was invited by one of my friends to join Clubhouse. Even though I was a little skeptic about “just another social media” app, I am impressed with the simplicity of the interaction: live drop-in audio interaction with minimal visual stimuli. Few other elements are playing into it, such as people’s bio and profile picture, but that’s about it. It simplifies the delivery by focusing on “the story you’re telling” and how you deliver it without the assistance of other visual elements such as text, audio or video.

How can you inspire, persuade, transport or inform people by only using your voice? That in itself presents an invaluable opportunity for anyone no matter what their industry or background is. It’s the platform for the ultimate public speaking experience.

Why do I find Clubhouse attractive?

The answer is exclusivity. Exclusivity is attractive. Right now, I think it’s attracting what the French call “crème de la crème” — the people who are hungry and thirsty for meaningful conversations and have real value to add and share with others. Outside my work, I have very limited conversations with people about my interests and personal projects. On Clubhouse, it doesn’t feel like I have to be an influencer to have a voice and share my thoughts and experiences with others.

Why do I find it empowering?

For someone who was never into the influencer culture and never followed someone simply because they’re famous, this social media platform works for me. I find it truly empowering because it’s for those who are not looking for fame; rather, it’s for people looking to bring value. I believed I had it in me to share my story with people. Still, I never found the platform than can provide real, creative, unpretentious and authentic interactions.

I managed to have conversations with people from all over the world. In a way, Clubhouse is democratizing communication by transcending geographical boundaries. Why should you pay a ticket to a conference where there is very little chance that you’re going to strike a conversation with the speaker when you can have a candid chat with them over Clubhouse?

I hope this interaction model will change how experts interact with people interested in their field, and I hope that we can all use our public speaking skills and flex our presentation muscles.

Why do I find it reliable?

The social media era created a system of accountability following community guidelines. It empowered people to be in the driver seat and find their voice. Clubhouse provided a safe space for me to share my talent without being judged by the volume of my following. For the most part, people show respect to the moderators, no matter who they are. The moderator exerts authority. This structure creates a self-managed system. Coming to think about it, it helped me muster up the courage to start discussions and speak up. It gave me the confidence to put my ideas out there.

Why do I find it inspiring?

For the longest time since the first lockdown started, I was dying for any kind of connection and social interaction. When I was asked to introduce myself in one of the Clubhouse rooms, I noticed that most people listened. They showed real interest in me and my work. I can finally talk about things I am passionate about that could have a real impact on other people. If you think about it, it’s a huge responsibility, and that’s exactly why I think it’s inspiring people to do better, be creative and show authenticity.

Why do I find it authentic?

I kept debating if I should prepare for my Clubhouse sessions. It takes a lot of effort for something to look effortless. I always prepare for my sessions; however, you have to understand that preparation is not equivalent to sticking to a certain agenda. The latter approach works very well for static discussions around certain areas. However, that’s not what people in Clubhouse are for. Part of the appeal to it is the unpretentious, fluid and most importantly, candid conversations. If you have to prepare for the conversation, then you’re probably better off doing that through a Youtube video or a podcast recording. Frankly speaking, if you want to be good at facilitating a candid conversation (and sometimes managing conflict), you should probably try it.

How can you use the app to get better at something you love doing?

When you’re on the other social media apps, it’s so easy to be punished and scrutinized for making an innocent mistake such as typos. On Clubhouse, you can set up anything from a serious conversation to a very casual discussion that makes plenty of room for mistakes and grants people forgiveness. I have to admit that I made many mistakes when I first tried to moderate rooms or speak, but I was always forgiven. It’s a great place for me to practice facilitation, public speaking and presentations.

You can promote your talent using FOMO

The fear of missing out (FOMO) can be crippling, especially that the conversations are not recorded and not available for you to listen to it at your own convenience. If you start a room with an interesting topic that people can relate to, they’ll simply join in. This has definitely worked for many people.

You can collaborate

First, think of who the app attracted. Based on my observation, Clubhouse is not attracting Gen Z. However, it’s breaking generational and socio-economic boundaries. It’s a great place to expand your network by simply being yourself. Talk about your interests with other people and listen to them. You’ll find that a lot of people are sharing the same interests as you. That’s where you look for collaboration opportunities and talents to complement yours.

It’s a great place to find people who truly believe in you and are loyal to your mission. I constantly search the app for people interested in presentations, and let me tell you, I found plenty. Then, I approached them to co-host discussions on Clubhouse. Right now, I host sessions every Saturday with people from all over the world!

You can work on your public speaking skills

I found the motivation to approach people that I’ve never met with or spoken to before, and I practiced my elevator pitch in front of hundreds of people. For the first couple of times, I was terrified, then I was more uncomfortable than scared. Today, I can say that I do not have any problem speaking in front of people in any Clubhouse room. I use the app to flex my presentation and public speaking muscles, and it’s becoming stronger the more I practice it. It’s a great stage for people to overcome the fear of public speaking.

You can prepare for the real world

Whatever that means to you, if you’re in the right room, you can practice pitching your ideas, presenting in front of a panel or even perfecting your language. Clubhouse provides a great opportunity for people to get real-time, authentic and smart feedback.

You can get inspired

Even though Clubhouse conversations are not recorded, you can still find inspiration based on your interests. Listening to some of my favourite speakers inspired me to become a facilitator and start my own podcast.

If you join rooms where people talk about their business ideas or creative content, you’re bound to learn something. The key is to deliberately listen to other people and give them the space to express themselves in their own ways.

You can find people to record a podcast with

I’ve realized that some people have a strong Clubhouse stage presence. It plays very well for them when they are facilitating, moderating or even discussing. If you’re interested in starting a podcast or finding people to record a podcast with, you should probably starting looking for people on the app with similar interest and reach out to them!

My strategy on Clubhouse

I think that for you to get better at something, you have first to observe and practice. I talked about “The Creative Curve” in my previous article, and I followed it myself to get better at practicing my talent on Clubhouse.

First Step: Observe — explore rooms with topics you’re interested in. Follow people who bring value, and you believe are interesting.

Second Step: Interact — start putting yourself out there and ask people to invite you to intriguing discussions.

Third Step: Collaborate — find the people who share common interests and approach them during live conversations or through their other offline social media apps to work together on something or discuss.

Fourth Step: Invent — start creating rooms for people to join. Create topics that are meaningful and valuable.

Final Step: Inspire — speak candidly about your journey, talent and experience. Try not to fit in the mold and be respectful of everyone. Inspire people to follow your creative journey and work on your presentation skills.

Allow people to speak, please!

Just like any other conversation you would have with anyone you know in real life, learn the etiquette of facilitation, discussion and conflict management. Don’t forget that people are on Clubhouse to express themselves, so allow them to speak. We’re all tired of lengthy speeches that turn everyone off. Help people learn more about you through dialogues, not monologues.

If you’re curious about using this app for marketing and networking, read this interesting article by Walid AO.

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