A lot's happened to Squarespace since it debuted as a Super Bowl advertiser one year ago, and the website-hosting startup's return to the big game reflects the confidence of a more established brand — not to mention "The Dude."
Last year's ad was a loud, boisterous introduction to Squarespace, and it included muscles, sex appeal and dozens of people on screen. This year's campaign, launched with a teaser spot Wednesday, features just one man — actor/musicianJeff Bridges.
Developed by Wieden + Kennedy New York, the commercials are a campaign to sell Bridges' original recording of music and sounds to hear as you fall asleep.
With $40 million in venture capital, a new product, and growing competition, Squarespace founder and CEO Anthony Casalena agreed the company is less concerned with explaining what it does and now is more focused on explaining why it's better. Direct competitors Wix and GoDaddy are also advertising Sunday.
"It's websites and e-commerce," Casalena said. "There's a million ways to do those things, and what makes Squarespace special is how we do those things. There absolutely is more confidence in this ad."
Working with Bridges, a stage and screen actor who's had big hits in five decades, was a rare treat, Casalena said. Bridges, perhaps best known to Casalena's generation as Quite Possibly The Laziest Man in Los Angeles County, strikes the right balance of being one of the most recognizable actors in America while retaining an air of authenticity.
"He's mainstream, but he's not like Kim Kardashian," he said. "He's just a thoughtful, authentic guy with a cool vibe to him, and we just liked him as a personality fit."