Super Bowl 50: GoDaddy Sits Out as Wix, Squarespace Hype Ads

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One of the biggest advertising events of the year takes place on Feb. 7, and companies in cloud and web services will have their usual prominent place in the festivities. Advertisements costing a record $377 million will air on CBS during Super Bowl 50, according to Advertising Age, and ads for Wix and Squarespace have been confirmed among them.

GoDaddy to Sit Out

Many consumers outside of the tech industry first became familiar with the term “web hosting” from GoDaddy’s aggressive marketing campaign which kicked off with an ad shown during Super Bowl 39 in 2005. GoDaddy’s string of Super Bowl spots have been a controversial staple of the broadcasts for over a decade, but will end this year, as the domain and hosting company sits on the sidelines.

Danica Patrick, who has filmed a Super Bowl ad for 14 consecutive years, told ESPN that she “knew pretty early on at the end of last year that the Super Bowl wasn’t in the plans.” GoDaddy, which ESPN reports still has a personal services contract with Patrick, substituted its planned ad with a less controversial one in 2015, in a move reflective of its shift from getting noticed to appealing directly to its target market.

Wix Returns with Crossover

Website builder Wix aired its first Super Bowl commercial last year. The Wix commercial will feature characters from Dreamworks’ Kung Fu Panda 3 attempting to boost the popularity of their favorite local restaurant, Mr. Ping’s Noodles.

“The Super Bowl is a huge stage, and all brands play offense to score big and win viewers’ attention. Collaborating with a creative leader like DreamWorks Animation enabled us to develop a fun and effective campaign that will give us an edge come Super Bowl Sunday,” said Wix CMO Omer Shai.

The Wall Street Journal reports that CBS is charging $5 million for a 30 second ad, and that Shai said traffic and subscriptions rose following its Super Bowl ad last year, and that the ad made more for the company then it cost. It also reports that Wix spent about $17 million on advertising (web video not included) in the first three-quarters of 2015.

Squarespace Brings Veteran Presence

Squarespace returns for its third year of Super Bowl advertisements this year. After 2015’s successful ad featuring Jeff Bridges, the website builder will field comedy duo Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele. The Journal reports that Squarespace spent over $25 million on advertising in 2014 and was on track to surpass that in 2015, despite being a small, unknown player in the market when its first Super Bowl ad aired.

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