Why Clubhouse Will Fail | My First Million

Key Takeaways

  •  Writing a viral thread has a lot of upsides: 
    • Shaan Puri got invited to go on CNBC and a German news station
    • Had his thread praised by a lot of famous individuals
    • Got an offer for a book deal
    • Shaan gained about 20,000 new followers from that one thread
  • Advice for writing a viral thread:
    • Write your thread and then come back to it an hour or so later. You want to look at it with fresh eyes and then edit it.
      • Ernest Hemingway used to say, “Write drunk, edit sober”
    • If you’re able to write about something a lot of people have a hunch about but can’t articulate well, people will share that post
  • Why does Shaan think Clubhouse will fail?
    • App downloads are slowing and user retention is falling
    • The app has an “interestingness” problem
      • Also known as TTF (time to fun) or the length of time it takes to have fun in the app. All the great apps (Tiktok, YouTube, etc.) take less than 7 seconds to get good content.
        • Additionally, Clubhouse is live so it’s exponentially harder for users to find good content quickly
  •  Clubhouse has two options:
    • Become a content platform with fast growth but low retention
    • Become a chilling platform with slow growth but high retention 
  • Two common mistakes newsletter writers make:
    • Charging too little
    • Not having a frontend and a backend product
      • You need a cheap product that a lot of people buy and a premium product that only a small number of people buy but makes you a lot of money

Intro

Books Mentioned

Shaan’s Viral Thread

  • Shaan wrote a Twitter thread about why Clubhouse will fail and it went viral
    • It got over 16k+ likes and 5 million impressions
      • In the thread, Shaan breaks down what the app has done right but also where it will fall short and possibly fail
  • Writing a viral thread has a lot of upsides: 
    • Shaan got invited to go on CNBC and a German news station
    • Had his thread praised by a lot of famous individuals
    • Got an offer for a book deal
    • Shaan gained about 20,000 new followers from that one thread
  • Advice for writing a viral thread:
    • Write your thread and then come back to it an hour or so later. You want to look at it with fresh eyes and then edit it.
      • Ernest Hemingway used to say, “Write drunk, edit sober”
    • If you’re able to write about something a lot of people have a hunch about but can’t articulate well, people will share that post
  • Sam’s viral post process:
    • Know what type of emotion you want to convey in your message
      • E.g: Making people feel outraged will get more shares than making people feel depressed
    • Ask yourself how are you packing this message
    • Create a catchy headline
    • Pick a good preview image
  • Sam recommends reading Made To Stick by Chip Heath and Contagious by Jonah Berger to learn more about how things go viral

The Bear Case For Clubhouse

  • Clubhouse raised $110 million while it was still in test flight mode. Today, it’s valued at over $1 billion.
  • Why does Shaan think Clubhouse will fail?
    • App downloads are slowing and user retention is falling
    • The app has an “interestingness” problem
      • Also known as TTF (time to fun) or the length of time it takes to have fun in the app. All the great apps (Tiktok, YouTube, etc.) take less than 7 seconds to get good content.
        • Additionally, Clubhouse is live so it’s exponentially harder for users to find good content quickly
  • Twitch is live and it’s doing well, can’t Clubhouse do the same?
    • Not exactly. Content creators on Twitch stream for 40 hours a week, you don’t have people on Clubhouse talking for 40 hours a week. It’s also much easier to entertain people by playing a video game than just talking.
    • Twitch is vertical (focused on gaming) while Clubhouse is horizontal (focuses on a wide range of topics), so Clubhouse users might not be interested in the current live topics when they open the app.
    • On Clubhouse, if you join a conversation 45 minutes late, you missed the best talking points and might be lost. 
  • What if Clubhouse becomes more of a social platform where people just go to talk instead of a place to create content?
    • If people are going to the platform to make friends, they aren’t going to be inviting their current friends and growth will slow down
  •  Clubhouse has two options:
    • Become a content platform with fast growth but low retention
    • Become a chilling platform with slow growth but high retention
  • Shaan predicts that Clubhouse will be sold to Facebook or a different big tech company

Making Millions In The Newsletter Business

  • You can build a multi-million dollar company just around newsletters
  • Sam sold The Hustle for 8 figures
  • Two common mistakes newsletter writers make:
    • Charging too little
    • Not having a frontend and a backend product
      • You need a cheap product that a lot of people buy and a premium product that only a small number of people buy but makes you a lot of money
        • E.g: Have a $99 a year product and a $2,000 a year product
  • Things you should know about the newsletter business:
    • 1) You need to sell your soul a little bit
      • You will be the face of the business and your reputation will be on the line
    • 2) It’s a treadmill you can’t stop
      • You have to constantly pump out new content 

Team Building Activities

  • Before COVID, corporate teams would do team building activities such as painting, doing an escape room, wine tasting, or other activities
  • Since more people are working remotely now than ever before, virtual team building is on the rise. There’s also been a lot of companies focused on team building activities such as:
    • Teamraderie
    • Nicebreak.fun
      • Sam and Shaan both believe these companies will do well and can make tens of millions of dollars annually
My First Million : , , , ,
Notes By Alex Wiec

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