How To Bring People Together During Covid

Using Technology 👯‍♀️🦠👩🏻‍💻

Hi, Dan here. Welcome to the 6th edition of my newsletter. 👋 This week:

New ways of bringing people together using tech are emerging. I share some for both social and work…

I’m someone who is mission-driven. The big thing driving me is: how can we use technology to Bring People Together?

Bringing people together is powerful. It’s part of what makes us human. Getting together over a shared purpose, interest or activity is how we connect, collaborate, achieve and enjoy.

My work at Airbnb and PartyWith (a Local) was using technology to bring people together offline - for nightlife and shared experiences.

As well as fostering spontaneous connections and great nights out around the world, some people who met through PartyWith became best friends, travelled together and moved in together.

Some even got together (and are still together… it wasn’t supposed to be a dating app people! 😅).

I still find it cool that technology I co-created fostered deep connections between people (who otherwise wouldn’t have met).

However, as we know, it’s difficult to get together in person right now - both socially and for work.

Life has moved online in many ways. And new ways of bringing people together (using technology) are emerging - I wanted to share a few interesting ones I’ve found recently…

👯‍♀️ How To Bring People Together Socially During Covid 🦠

  1. Meet New People / Hang Out: Night In Online Experiences on Airbnb

    It can be quite difficult (and dangerous) to go out and meet people right now. Airbnb launched Online Experiences as a direct response to covid, after hosts suggested it.

    Night In are a subset (that I made up) of these Online Experiences, and great social alternative during covid.

    Here’s my hand-picked list of the best. I personally onboarded some of these Experiences, and have taken them all. The hosts are amazing and the Experiences are all about connection, drinks, music and fun... just online!

Looking for Online Experiences to do with your team at work instead? Check these ones out.

  1. Watch a Show Together: Netflix Parties

    You could argue that Netflix already brings people together. I certainly talk to friends and family about shows I’ve watched on Netflix, or to discover new ones.

    Netflix Party is a Chrome extension that allows you to watch shows at exactly the same time as friends, and adds a group chat function to the Netflix window. (it’s actually been around for 5 years, but likely coming into its own during covid).

  1. Listen Together: Spotify Group Sessions

    Spotify Premium users can now host listening parties with up to five friends. Users can create a shareable link with up to five friends (who also have Spotify Premium), which allows them to stream the same content at the same time.

  1. Listen, Learn & Share: Shuffle

    Discover and discuss 60-second highlights (selected and shared by the community) from the world's best podcasts on tech, startups and life. I’m a big fan of this app and the vibrant little community which is forming around it.

Others: Online quizzes like Kahoot are another fun way to bring people together.

And though not as intimate, there’s a ton of Livestreams & Virtual Concerts still going on, that bring a larger (stadium-style) group of people together around shared events and experiences.

👩🏻‍💻 How To Bring People Together For Work During Covid 🦠

I find it fascinating that some tech companies have exploded with growth during covid (Zoom being the most obvious example). I think many of these companies / products would have succeeded in the long-run. Covid has simply accelerated existing trends, like remote work.

  1. Online Collaboration: Miro

    Miro is a simple-to-use online whiteboard that helps you collaborate in real-time or asynchronously. There’s multiple options for remote teams, with intuitive templates and a visually appealing collaborative whiteboard experience.

    I’ve started using Miro to map out my life and plans post-Airbnb. I’m loving the visual nature of the product and its ease-of-use so far.

  1. Team Updates Without Meetings: Grapevine

    I was getting Zoom meeting fatigue back in May, I can only imagine how it is for people still living on Zoom everyday for work now! With Grapevine team members can share one-way video updates to ensure everyone is moving in the same direction, less scheduled meetings required. 🙏

  2. Recreate The Office Experience Online: Cliq

    From getting into work and greeting your co-workers, to checking if someone is available for a a quick coffee break, Cliq's Remote Work essentially helps recreate some of the feeling of being in an office… online.

  1. Virtual Events: Run the World

    ‘Run The World enables you to bring your communities, followers, or fans together through online experiences that are better than in-person ones.’ A big claim right there. But I do like sound of their Virtual Cocktail Party.

  2. Team-building: Moonshot

    Moonshot is a remote escape game for team building purposes:

Also on team-building, another shout out for Online Experiences as well as Kahoot.

Have you found any other cool new ways of bringing people together? Would love to hear in the comments!

Stay well.

Dan 🤘