Woman Quits Engineering Job in GoDaddy Super Bowl Commercial to Pursue Puppet Business

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During one of two GoDaddy Super Bowl commercials last night, a 36-year-old woman from New York quit her job as a machine engineer to pursue her puppet-making business full-time.

Gwen Dean, owner of PuppetsByGwen.com, started making puppets in 2008, but has worked as a machine engineer since graduating high school. Dean was selected to appear in the commercial alongside actor John Turturro out of over 100 candidates who intended to quit their job in order to pursue dreams of owning their own business.

The commercial, produced by Deutsch NY and shot in Long Beach, California, is a far cry from the GoDaddy Super Bowl commercials produced in previous seasons, which isolated many customers, including women. When GoDaddy first talked about its Super Bowl commercials for 2014, it vowed to leave “risqué innuendo” behind.

The WHIR talked to GoDaddy CEO Blake Irving in October about its changing image, which reflects its desire to help small businesses succeed through web hosting and related services.

“When the market you serve is 48 percent women, you have to change the way you speak to that audience,” Irving said in the interview in October.

Dean used GoDaddy’s Website Builder and its design team to build her online store.

She emailed her official resignation letter to her employer right after the commercial aired, according to the press release.

“Being in the Super Bowl is giving me unbelievable exposure for my puppet business – it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for sure. After this all settles down, it will be my website, PuppetsByGwen.com, that will keep my name out there and help me get found online,” Dean said in a statement. “I’m thrilled to have the GoDaddy Website Builder powering my site and am getting ready to book puppet shows and maybe even sell some puppets … I just have two more weeks before I can focus on my business full-time, but my PuppetsByGwen.com website is already hard at work.”

The second GoDaddy Super Bowl ad starred Danica Patrick as a body builder in a stampede of bodybuilders running to a tanning salon. When the tanning salon owner sees them at her door, she pulls out her tanning gun and says, “It’s go time,” GoDaddy’s new messaging which first appeared in its commercial with Jean-Claude Van Damme, released last year.

This is the tenth consecutive year that GoDaddy has run a Super Bowl campaign. It has worked with ad agency Deutsch NY since 2012 when it launched its London summer Olympics campaign.

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