The past year and a half have seen many in-person events canceled, postponed, or moved online. Some organizations have even found themselves expanding to new venues and media. TED, famed for its inspiring and mind-opening talks, has long provided videos of those conferences across the world. Earlier this year, it embarked on a new audio-only format and is now partnering with the hottest audio-only social network to bring TED to Clubhouse chats.
There has been a resurgence of popularity in audio-only media like podcasts recently, perhaps in response to the flood of video streaming and video conferencing that has been happening in the past years. Spotify, Apple, and even Facebook are now competing to be the big next podcast home, but Clubhouse and TED are taking a slightly different approach to the audio-only media space.
TED already launched its Audio Collective podcast last year, but, like any podcast, it’s mostly a one-way street. Sure, listeners can send questions or feedback, but there isn’t any live interaction with listeners unless the hosts are doing live calls. That is something Clubhouse has already proven to be great at, and it’s bringing that Q&A format to TED listeners.
According to The Verge, the exclusive partnership between the two involves TED having the freedom to sell ads or brand partnerships without Clubhouse taking any cut. That’s rather unusual for such deals, but Clubhouse might just be after the positive press this exposure will bring. The first TED Clubhouse room will be hosted on July 12 at 11 AM ET, and succeeding chats will take place every Monday afterward.
It’s an interesting new venue for the young Clubhouse and perhaps a testament to its own brand power to bag a deal with TED. It won’t be alone in that space, however, with Apple, Spotify, Facebook, and Twitter all offering their own audio-only spaces. It will be a race to sign up big names for these networks, potentially making it the next big social media battleground.