Being irreverent is cool. But there's a line that should not be crossed. GoDaddy found that line.
If you piss enough people off with a TV ad, you don't even have to air the ad on television. The press coverage of a supposedly offensive spot can potentially dwarf the exposure of even a Super Bowl TV ad. This "any press is good press" attitude helped build GoDaddy into the household brand name it is today. One of the unfortunate side effects of this gimmick marketing strategy is that sooner or later, many people are going to start associating the brand with the gimmick rather than the core message. In GoDaddy's case, sleaziness. (The company's CEO did nothing to improve the company's reputation.)
How to make it cool againStop being such an ass. Irreverence doesn't have to disregard good taste. So be more cognizant of the people that you might annoy by pretending that you don't care.
As for GoDaddy, after seven years of producing in-house TV spots, GoDaddy hired Deutsch to produce its ads for the 2013 Super Bowl. The end of an era? If so, it's the end of an era in which GoDaddy had become decidedly uncool.
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