GoDaddy has tried various things to break out of its reputation for sleaze. First, it kept the attractive women but added some geeky guys. Then it had an attractive woman make out with a geeky guy. Then it did a quirky ad with Jean-Claude Van Damme.
Now, though, the brand is really just going for it with new agency Barton F. Graf 9000—the New York shop known for its offbeat ads for Kayak, Ragú and Dish Network.
The ads start off like treacly testimonials, but quickly take a left turn. And before you know it, one woman is screaming at her dead father's ashes—while another is doing mildly obscene hip thrusts that go on uncomfortably long. (The focus remains on how the company supports small business owners with online tools to help create websites, get found online and keep businesses organized.)
To its credit, GoDaddy isn't afraid to go full-on crazy here, as opposed to the Van Damme spot, which felt a bit self-conscious and manufactured. And Gerry Graf and friends have that knack for making ads that seem truly, memorably peculiar.
"GoDaddy is an iconic brand, which makes this an exciting challenge and really, our team is much like a GoDaddy customer because we are a small agency with big ideas," Graf said in a statement. "GoDaddy has some innovative tools to help people who own their own business. I know this because I own my own business and I use GoDaddy's tools. We're going to let everybody else in the world in on this."
GoDaddy CMO Barb Rechterman added: "We want to maintain our sense of humor while focusing on how GoDaddy's services empower customers … and do it in a creative ways that speak to the 'go getter' inside of so many entrepreneurs and small business owners out there looking for an edge. The Barton F. Graf team took a very strategic view of our brand and pitched innovative campaign ideas that were right on message … and had us all laughing."
So, are you laughing, too?