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DATE News (chronologically)
06/15/12
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Go Daddy Ditches Danica In New `Conservative' Ad  UPDATE
Sexy Danica Patrick may not fit GoDaddy's marketing theme going forward
While people have been buzzing about GoDaddy's recent announcement that it has hired an ad agency (Deutsch NY) to create a more conservative and technologically-oriented campaign, there has been little about race car driver and GoDaddy spokeswoman Danica Patrick's future with the company.

"Our Go Daddy Girl is not in our new Olympics campaign," Barb Rechterman, CMO of GoDaddy, told Business Insider. "Danica and Go Daddy have worked very well together, no doubt ... but we are going to make our initial shift without Danica."

Although Patrick's contract with GoDaddy goes through next year and she will continue to drive GoDaddy's racing car, her spot is not secure.

"We want see how the new ads perform before we make any casting decisions on future Go Daddy commercials," Rechterman continued.

After reading the GoDaddy girl's interview in this morning's USA Today', titled "Danica Patrick goes conservative," one must wonder if Patrick got the memo: "I'm kind of excited to see what they come up with, and creativity is all about thinking new," she told USA Today.

Patrick also told AOL's Sporting News that there was "absolutely" a place for her in the new campaign.

The ad, called "Inside/Out" aims to move away from GoDaddy's click-to-our-site-to-see-more-skin commercials that actually explain what the company does.

But don't worry, the GoDaddy girls won't be wearing mu mus.

"People will get their GoDaddy girl fix," Val DiFebo, CEO of GoDaddy's new agency Deutsch NY, told Business Insider.

The ad is being cast now and is set to shoot next week. While DiFebo wouldn't comment about Patrick's future, "I will tell you that beautiful attractive women are connected with the brand equity and they will be in the ad."

"We found a really effective balance in the equity that they've established with the GoDaddy girls and balanced that to where they're headed from a tech standpoint," DiFebo said.

But will this new tactic work?

"They might want those other commercials back," Patrick told Sporting News. "They might be like, ‘Oh, what was I complaining about.'"

GoDaddy still reserves the right to bring Danica back. The site told BI that it has already began talking to CBS about securing a Super Bowl spot, which makes sense since the site told us it broke its own sales record this year on Super Bowl Sunday.

Who's making it, and who's in it, is still up for grabs.

"Yes, we are working with [Deutsch NY] for the first set of spot, and then when we're done with the first set of spots we'll talk about the future," Rechterman said.

No pressure, or anything.

"I think that if GoDaddy had their site set on having Super Bowl then our sites are set," DiFebo said. Businessinsider.com

06/15/12

Go Daddy, Danica Patrick going conservative

Go Daddy's switch to a more refined brand of commercials will suit its most famous spokeswoman, who has been aligning with a more refined lineup of sponsors, too.

"I'm kind of excited to see what they come up with, and creativity is all about thinking new," Danica Patrick said. "With Nationwide, Coke, Tissot and William Rast, we definitely have all the partners that do much more safer things."

After years of using an in-house production company to run racy commercials often featuring scantily clad women and suggestive themes, Go Daddy also is heading in a more conservative direction. It has hired Deutsch New York to develop a new campaign that founder Bob Parsons told The New York Times will be more businesslike.

Patrick, who has been featured in a record 10 Super Bowl ads by Go Daddy (including two this year), said the time is right for a change, noting subtle shifts in Go Daddy's strategy. Since a private equity firms gained a majority stake in the company last year in a $2.25 billion deal, small businesses have become a focal point.

"As the company grows, you tend to find yourself accommodating to the masses more as opposed to trying to be polarizing," Patrick, who recently turned 30, said. "They achieved that size that they just need to have that solid, mainstream presence, and that trustworthiness and credibility and things that come along with taking a slightly more safer route. I'm ready for it.

"Over the years, I've said no to the Go Daddy stuff at times for sure. I said years ago I'd love to do some more funny stuff. People want to see something new and fresh."

Wednesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, she was shooting a new commercial with Dale Earnhardt Jr. for Nationwide Insurance.

The pair have starred in a series of Nationwide ads this year that Patrick said have been getting a strong reception because of the lighthearted material and her easygoing rapport with Earnhardt.

"I love it when commercials take a funny direction," said Patrick, a fan of slapstick comedy. "They're the most memorable."

Patrick has no regrets, though, about having pushed the envelope while building her brand with Go Daddy.

"I think there's a place for it, too," she said. "It's fun, it's a little bit edgy, a little bit different. I never do anything I don't feel comfortable with, and we had a lot of fun." USA Today

A ‘Grown Up’ GoDaddy Hires an Ad Agency

GoDaddy, a brand notorious for suggestive Super Bowl commercials with scantily clad women known as GoDaddy Girls, is hiring a professional advertising agency to create campaigns as the company seeks a more professional image.

GoDaddy, which registers Internet domain names and is a Web hosting provider, announced on Tuesday afternoon that it has hired Deutsch New York as its creative agency, effective immediately.

The first work for GoDaddy from Deutsch New York will be commercials that are to appear next month, during the NBC coverage of the 2012 Summer Olympics, as part of a campaign carrying the theme “Inside/Out.”

GoDaddy has been producing its own commercials and other ads for more than seven years, replete with broad humor, well-endowed women and double entendres. The approach has been called “GoDaddy-esque” by Bob Parsons, the founder and chief executive of the company, who has reveled in all the attention – as well as the considerable criticism for being sexist – that the campaigns have generated.

But in July, private equity powerhouses that included Kohlberg Kravis Roberts paid about $2.25 billion for a majority stake in GoDaddy and named Warren Adelman the chief executive; Mr. Parsons became executive chairman.

In a recent interview with Bloomberg Businessweek magazine, Mr. Adelman signaled that the era of racy GoDaddy marketing would come to an end.

“We are synonymous with inexpensive domains and sexy girls,” Mr. Adelman told the magazine. “I think there is a different message we have to expose people to.”

Mr. Parsons, in a phone interview on Tuesday, said he was fine with GoDaddy’s marketing taking “a new direction.”

“Any company has got to reinvent itself again and again,” Mr. Parsons said. He likened GoDaddy’s previous persona to that of “a frat boy,” adding, “And now, we’ve graduated from college.”

“We’re more businesslike,” Mr. Parsons said, “and will focus on the business side of things.”

“We’ve grown up now,” he added. “We’re always going to be GoDaddy, but be GoDaddy in a different way.”

The first racy GoDaddy commercial was created for the 2005 Super Bowl by the Ad Store agency in New York. It spoofed the Janet Jackson “wardrobe malfunction” during the Super Bowl halftime show the previous year. The commercial made the company instantly famous, but Mr. Parsons dismissed the Ad Store two months later and GoDaddy began handling ads internally.

Deutsch New York was one of five outside agencies initially considered to create a new style of GoDaddy marketing, Mr. Parsons said. The field was narrowed to three, then two, and then finally Deutsch New York, he said, declining to identify the other participants in the review.

Deutsch New York is part of the Deutsch division of Lowe & Partners, an agency owned by the Interpublic Group of Companies.

Its work includes ads for Degree deodorant, DirecTV, Johnson & Johnson, the milk mustache campaign and Outback Steakhouse.

GoDaddy did “a terrific job generating awareness” of its brand, said Val DiFebo, chief executive at Deutsch New York, who described the previous ads as “very disruptive.”

“As a woman, is it my favorite work?” she asked rhetorically, then replied, “No.”

“But as a marketer, I have to respect what they’ve done,” she added.

In the new campaign from Deutsch New York, the GoDaddy Girls “will still have a role,” Ms. DiFebo said, but “more in balance with what the brand has to offer.”

The ads will tell more of a story about GoDaddy’s technology rather than entice consumers with appeals like “‘To see more skin, click here,’” she added. (That was a reference to lines at the end of GoDaddy Super Bowl spots asking viewers to go to godaddy.com to see what was billed as more provocative versions of the spots.)

“We leverage the power the girls have brought to the table,” Ms. DiFebo said of the new campaign, “and give the technology behind the company its fair share of the stage.”

The West Coast office of Deutsch, known as Deutsch L.A., has extensive Super Bowl advertising experience, including commercials for Volkswagen with “Star Wars” themes. One of those commercials, “The Force,” from 2011, featuring a boy dressed as Darth Vader, has been watched more than 53 million times on YouTube.

Coincidentally, Max Page, the boy who played Darth Vader in the spot, is to undergo open-heart surgery on Wednesday, Deutsch L.A. said in an e-mail. The boy has worked as an ambassador for the hospital where his surgery is to take place, Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles, and the agency is asking for donations to help support the hospital. Media Decoder

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