I’ve hesitated viewing chat as a viable business tool primarily because you needed AOL, MSN, Yahoo, Google and IQC chat clients downloaded in order to synch your chats up with the people you wanted to have a chat with. I know that there are some services out there that helped with this compatibility issue but they were still semi-hacks.

Chat is one of those tools that was created with the teenager in mind, not the business person.

37Signals released the businessperson’s answer to this dilemma. It’s called Campfire

Campfire makes group chat easy

  • Every chat has a permanent URL
  • Campfire chats don’t require special chat software or networks
  • Instantly share and discuss files with your colleagues/clients
  • Search or browse through transcripts of past chats
  • Chat securely over SSL (Plus and Premium plans)

The fact that no one, guest or member, has to worry about which platform the chat is on is what will really make this service take-off.

A tool this powerful has the ability to impact traditional forms of communication.

For example: What about a group mastermind that is scheduled, produced and recorded as premium content.

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John Jantsch

John Jantsch is a marketing consultant, speaker and author of Duct Tape Marketing, Duct Tape Selling, The Commitment Engine and The Referral Engine and the founder of the Duct Tape Marketing Consultant Network.
  • tom
  • Hello,

    I’ve been using a paid version of Campfire for about 5 months now and this definitely could be a useful tool. We’re using it for some of the communication in our virtual team.

    However, I’m still on the fence with longterm commitment and I’d actually welcome a reasonable alternative.

    The basic problem is that the software has issues with chat freezing and missing notifications. However, the far bigger issue is 37 Signal’s support, which is my experience is really terrible.

    I’ve only received reply to my support ticket after several emails with nagging and they didn’t actually bother to work with me on solving the problem. I’m really disappointed, since I hoped this will be a better kind of company.

    So you may want to double check it before commiting to the software.

    If it works for you though, then I’d say this is a good piece of code. Especially if you’re on Mac (where you have Pyro to support it).