Register.com Is No GoDaddy

NEW YORK Register.com wants to be the anti-GoDaddy.

The New York-based Internet domain name registration company is trying to position itself as the staid, buttoned-down alternative to GoDaddy.com, which is known for its racy Super Bowl ads.

“People don’t know what they [GoDaddy] do, but they have overwhelmed the market,” said Larry Kutscher, CEO of Register.com. “As a competitor, we need to get our name out.”

As part of that effort Register.com this week started testing two 30-second commercials from Fly Communications, New York. In the direct response spots people talk about what their business URLs would be. For example, a dentist says he would be “brushyourteethtonight.com.”

Where GoDaddy’s marketing employs celebrities, sex appeal and humor, Register goes for the straightforward, non-ironic hard sell.

In addition to the spots currently in testing, Register this week launched a section on its Web site called The Learning Center, where experts offer small business owners advice on topics such as choosing a domain name, increasing e-commerce revenue and creating brands online.

“When I look out and see what GoDaddy is doing, I see a sort of a frivolous approach. GoDaddy has a much bigger market focus. They’re interested in college students and individuals,” said Kutscher. “Our focus is the small business customer, which is anyone with a profit focus. We’re very much about saying, ‘Here’s how we can make you successful.'”

Asked to respond to Register’s comments, Barb Rechterman, evp marketing at GoDaddy said, “We use our thirty seconds of Super Bowl commercial time to bring people to our site to see our offerings for themselves.  It’s known as brand-marketing and it has paid off in spades for Go Daddy. We had 5 million visitors in a very short span of time.  We are very happy with our ad’s performance.  Interesting one of our 1,000 or so competitors would make disparaging comments in the media, but by commenting on Go Daddy, he did get his company’s name in this article.”