All Publicity Is Good for Go Daddy’s New Star

After years of solid acting, Jesse Heiman is an overnight sensation

For a commercial that showed a public display of affection, Go Daddy's "Perfect Match" ad on the Super Bowl drew more than its share of the opposite. The 30-second spot, which showed supermodel Bar Refaeli and homely actor Jesse Heiman kissing, finished dead last on USA Today's Ad Meter, and was met with howls of revulsion nationwide—in living rooms and social media alike.

Yet it clearly wasn't a total disaster. In a venue where getting noticed is half the battle, "Perfect Match," created by Deutsch in New York, did spectacularly well. The video drew more than 4 million views on YouTube before the game even kicked off, and has more than 6.5 million now—placing it among the game's most-watched spots. Likewise, the metrics on Twitter suggest it was one of the most talked-about ads there—with #TheKiss becoming one of the top ad hashtags of the night.

For its part, Go Daddy said the ad "drove tremendous buzz and business," and helped the company enjoy its most successful Super Bowl Sunday ever.

Refaeli was the bigger celebrity, but it took two to tango. Here, Adweek sits down with Heiman, 34—aka, Walter the tech nerd—for his take on the night's most outrageous ad. 

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