At the peak of the Internet bubble in early 2000, Super Bowl ads were dominated by dot-coms that would soon be sold or shuttered, including Pets.com, OurBeginning.com, Kforce.com, netpliance, Computer.com and Epidemic Marketing. These failures were noted by the advertising weblog Brand Autopsy which warned Go Daddy to find a better use for its $2.4 million.
“You can learn a lot from their failures,” wrote blogger John Moore. “You are being blinded by the marketing mirage of creating brand awareness that comes with the possibility of reaching 95 million viewers watching the Super Bowl … not to mention the publicity you hope to gain by being mentioned in the media as an advertiser.”
To the surprise of the blog’s readers, Parsons joined the conversation to explain his decision. “The earlier dot coms that busted after advertising on the SuperBowl were never viable to begin with,” Parsons noted in comments on the site. “We’ve been profitable since Oct 2001 and expect sales in 2005 (without the Super Bowl) of close to $200 million.”
Go Daddy has done nearly all of its marketing online, but may be feeling pressure from recent moves by Yahoo and Interland, who have begun offering domain names for lower prices. The Super Bowl spot for Go Daddy will kick off a broader marketing campaign that will include print and Tv ads.