"I would think the Super Bowl probably put Go Daddy on the map," says Tom Egelhoff, the founder of SmallTownMarketing.com. "It was probably a stretch for them to be on there."

Smaller companies that air Super Bowl commercials are "either bringing out new products or trying to build a strong brand, like Go Daddy" Strum says.

Groupon, an online coupon service that operates in more than 300 markets and 35 countries, is preparing its first foray into television advertising with a spot during the Super Bowl pregame show.

The Super Bowl will likely be a good venue for the daily-deal website, Strum said. The four-year-old company recently turned heads when it rejected acquisition advances from Google (GOOG, news). It subsequently said it had received almost $1 billion in venture capital.

Groupon could follow the edgy path taken by the likes of Salesgenie and Go Daddy, or opt for the kind of positive exposure elicited by last year's Super Bowl commercial for HomeAway. The Austin, Texas, company's spot used Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo to spoof their roles as Clark and Ellen Griswold from the 1989 movie "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation."

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"They're back again this year, so clearly it worked," Steinberg said of HomeAway.

CEO Brian Sharples said in a statement that the company's "Hotel Hell Vacation" commercial generated a 500% increase in traffic to its website the day after the Super Bowl and 1 million incremental page views over a 24-hour period. Last year's spot was cited by analysts as one of the best at "driving business results and engagement," Sharples said in announcing that the company would advertise during Sunday's broadcast.

A Super Bowl ad hits most major demographics, from soccer moms to affluent executives, said Advertising Age's Steinberg. "(It's) a very broad-based audience, and you reach all kinds of niche groups as part of the mass."

This article was reported by Laurie Kulikowski for TheStreet.