SBD/August 1, 2013/Marketing and Sponsorship

GoDaddy Evaluating Its Role In Motorsports Realm As Company Eyes Global Expansion

Patrick's lack of success isn't likely to affect her status with GoDaddy
GoDaddy CEO Blake Irving plans on "taking the company global next year," and that means motorsports sponsorships have to be "budgeted into the overall spend as GoDaddy puts an emphasis on [the] World Cup and reaching Latin American markets," according to Jenna Fryer of the AP. The company is "in the final year of its IndyCar contract with Andretti Autosport and driver James Hinchcliffe," while NASCAR driver Danica Patrick's deal "runs at least through 2014." Irving said that both are "strong GoDaddy ambassadors." Irving: "Hinch is such a great fit because he's got such a great understanding of social media, he's actually popped on social media in a way Danica hasn't. But both of them from a characteristic standpoint have made their own way, whether it was super sharp on how you get sponsors, how you position yourself and then how hard you actually race and how hard you try." Fryer noted Hinchcliffe can "negotiate with other IndyCar teams about his future" around Aug 15. Andretti Autosport would "like to have the three-time winner re-signed before the deadline, but first needs a commitment from GoDaddy." Irving "smirked when asked about GoDaddy's interest in staying in IndyCar." He said, "I would absolutely never screw up my negotiating advantage by answering that question." But Irving noted that racing is a "valuable venue and correlates with the GoDaddy message." GoDaddy also will have a "new focus on the domestic advertising campaign, which began to shift toward small businesses during last year's Olympic Games." Irving said that the ad Patrick and Hinchcliffe currently co-star in is "likely one of the last of its kind." Fryer: "Make no mistake, new leadership at GoDaddy has changed nothing about Patrick's position as its No. 1 marketer despite her struggles to reach the podium" (AP, 7/31).
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