Why audio-only social media platform Clubhouse is now focusing on India

In a recent conversation with YourStory’s Daily Dispatch, Aarthi Ramamurthy, Head of International at Clubhouse, shares key insights on the company’s growth story, why India is a focus country, and its plans for the future.
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Introducing a refreshing way to connect with people, Clubhouse was launched in 2020 as a social media platform that uses audio as the primary mode of communication. The audio-only platform, which was invite-only until July 2021, is available on Android as well as iOS. Receiving an overwhelming response within a short span of time, Clubhouse has made a mark around the globe.

While discussing the success of the platform, Aarthi Ramamurthy, Head of International, Clubhouse, tells YourStory’s Daily Dispatch that the response they got after the app was launched was extremely positive and overwhelming. This proved that India is a very big and strategically important market for Clubhouse and the company is now doubling down on expanding in the country.

Image Credit : TechCrunch

“In other markets, we have seen very specific kinds of verticals in rooms. In India, the diversity of rooms has been extraordinary,” she says. There are cricket rooms, Bollywood rooms, antakshari rooms, religious rooms, etc. They have also launched language localisation and have rolled it out across the globe in 26 different languages on Android.

She mentions that the platform was seeing around 3,00,000 rooms created per day in the summer, which bumped up to over 7,00,000 rooms per day. “We felt like we were on the right track for helping creators create rooms and have conversations,” says Aarthi. Apart from that, an average listener was spending about 60 minutes a day on the platform and towards the end of summer, it increased to 70 plus minutes a day.

“As long as the engagement metric is going up for us across the world, we feel like we’re really happy about how Clubhouse is being adopted,” says Aarthi.

Aarthi shares that in the last few months, the platform has included audio-specific features like music mode. “We have invested in specific strategic features over time even in the last month or so,” she says. The focus now is on helping creators achieve success-monetisation tools through features such as tipping, pinned links, subscriptions, etc.

She explains that after their latest fundraise, the company looks well-capitalised. When it comes to expansion, the company is aimed at strategically positioning itself in the international markets, with Clubhouse now looking to invest in India. “Fundraising for us is the means to an end,” says Aarthi.

Speaking of revenue targets, she says that revenue sharing would be a part of their monetisation tactics. They are also looking at creator taxes and a lot of other things. “We’ll have a revenue share model when we roll out monetisation but we still want to make sure that creators are first,” says Aarthi. Lastly, she says that India is definitely in the top three markets of focus for Clubhouse.

Edited by Kanishk Singh

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