NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- What happens when you put Danica Patrick and a beaver in the same spot -- and then don't air it on the Super Bowl?
GoDaddy Super Bowl Spot Sets Web-Traffic Record
According to GoDaddy.com, record web traffic.
After Fox refused to air GoDaddy.com's initial cut of its Super Bowl ad for its play on the word "beaver," the web marketer took a different approach. It retooled the commercial, titled "Exposure," to focus on the excitement of Super Bowl fans visiting GoDaddy.com to see the controversial "banned from Fox" ad online.
The result? Two million hits on the site during Super Bowl Sunday, which is a record, said Go Daddy founder and CEO Bob Parsons.
The traffic was head and shoulders over the numbers GoDaddy.com posted in its three previous Bowl outings. Last year's trio of ads, for example, lured 500,000 viewers to the site (two were in the game, one in the postgame coverage). Mr. Parsons dubbed this year's Bowl buy a "smash hit," because he was able to do more with a single ad than he had with three, and at a fraction of the cost.
"For us, because we're an internet company and we sell domain names, there's no way we can really explain what we do in a commercial. We had to get people to our website," he said.
The edgy, though ham-fisted ad -- a parody of sorts on the whole celebrity "upskirt" phenomenon -- didn't curry favor with all viewers. A GoDaddy.com survey asked 160,000 people what they thought of the commercial. Some 17.1% of males disliked the ad; 16.5% of females disliked it. This was OK with Mr. Parsons, because "they still came to the website. I would be happy with that number even if it was 37%."
The morning-after buzz continues to linger. Mr. Parsons wrote in his blog today that traffic to the site is "up by a factor of 3.5 times compares to normal."