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10/30/2012
12:39 PM
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NationalField Campaigns For Social Business

Software that gained fame as an online tool for Barack Obama's 2008 campaign puts setting and tracking corporate goals at the center of enterprise social networking.

This year, NationalField has been working more aggressively to broaden its reputation with press appearances, including an InformationWeek ValleyView video. This month it secured a $1.5 million round of financing, which Saatchi said will go toward developing mobile apps and building a sales team (meaning it will be more than just him).

Saatchi didn't say much about how the software is being used by the Obama team in 2012, other than that "the campaign still does have the same approach." NationalField is still very active in politics, but trying to expand its base, he said.

Meanwhile, it's waging a sarcastic online campaign against a fictional competitor called Zammer with a series of YouTube videos, with pointed commentary that could also apply to other enterprise social networks. One of these screen-capture vignettes, titled "Likes," features a happy social conversation among workers about how their numbers are up. This has "DinaVPSales" excited until she realizes they're talking about social networking metrics, not money coming into the organization, and finds it impossible to drag the conversation back to practical business objectives.

"The sense I get from customers is they want something different. They still believe in social, but they're not satisfied by what they're getting," Saatchi said.

Adoption

Likes

Noise

Follow David F. Carr on Twitter @davidfcarr. The BrainYard is @thebyard and facebook.com/thebyard

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