Skip to content

Turkey and Green Beans Gone Viral (and a Virtual Visit to a Museum) [The Weekly Wrap]

It’s turkey and green bean casserole time in the United States. We talk turkey hotline (phone and AI versions), eat our veggies (a good-for-you lesson), and take a break from food with an enticing stay-at-home museum experience.

These are the three things noticed this week.

Butterball Talks Turkey Old and New

WHO: Butterball

WHAT: The Butterball Turkey Talk Line offers expert advice on both unique and common questions that bubble up during holiday meal prep. In 2020 fashion, Butterball’s team of cooking counselors talk turkey from their homes rather than from a central HQ. But that’s not the only change for the nearly 40-year-old seasonal hotline, which operates in November and December.

Growing its distribution channels to fit its audience’s preferences, Butterball now answers questions through online chat, email, and even virtual assistant Alexa.

Growing its distribution channels to fit its audience’s preferences, @Butterball now answers questions through online chat, email, and virtual assistant @Alexa99, says @KMoutsos via @CMIContent. #WeeklyWrap Share on X

Image source


WHY IT MATTERS: Though consumers in the 21st century have more how-to options at their fingertips than they did in 1981, the Butterball Turkey Talk Line remains popular. In 2019, 50 experts answered over 100,000 calls, as Paul Hiebert recently wrote in Adweek (free registration to read).

What drives cooks to pick up the phone instead of surfing the web for answers? “A kind and caring voice on the other end of the line could be why,” Paul writes.

As Rebecca Welch, senior brand manager at Butterball tells him, “Some people have questions, and some people are looking for support and validation.” 

HOW IT WAS DISCOVERED: CMI’s Kim Moutsos saw the Adweek article and wanted to share the evolution of this content marketing “oldie but goodie.”

The Staying Power of Green Bean Casserole

WHO: Braithwaite Communications

WHAT: This 2018 article, How Campbell’s Conquered Holiday Marketing With Green Bean Casserole, explains the history of the famous dish that accounts for 40% of Campbell’s cream of soup annual sales. (Yes, if you’re wondering, recipes are content marketing.) As the authors note, the casserole has been modified and reinvented by other brands, but the tried-and-true 1955 recipe remains the most popular version.

Image source


WHY IT MATTERS: Campbell’s has long invested in a test kitchen to develop edible content (i.e., recipes) for its products. It hit a winner with this simple dish, but it’s also had some flops – the inventor of green bean casserole also created the less successful tomato-soup meatloaf recipe. The lesson? Don’t rely on a single success, keep innovating and creating. You may never achieve the virality of the original, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try.

HOW IT WAS DISCOVERED: Braithwaite sent the information as a news release to CMI’s Ann Gynn. When we looked for a web-based link to the release we discovered that the text came from a Braithwaite blog post in 2018. That’s a lesson too – it’s OK to repurpose old content, just be transparent about it. 

It’s ok to repurpose old #content, just be transparent about it, says @AnnGynn via @CMIContent. #WeeklyWrap Share on X

A Digitized Museum Experience Fit for Royalty

WHO: Netflix and Brooklyn Museum 

WHAT: The Brooklyn Museum and Netflix collaborated on a virtual exhibit of costumes from the streaming giant’s original series The Queen’s Gambit and The Crown. Visitors enter the museum, pick a series, and are guided to the costumes on display. A click on one model eliminates all the other mannequins so the visitor can focus on it and see an image of the clothing as it was worn in the series. You can click on multiple camera icons to take a closer look at elements of the costume. Tip: If you pay a visit, keep your sound on – the music adds to the atmosphere.


WHY IT MATTERS: Digitized experiences are a dime a dozen, especially in the age of COVID-19, notes submitter Ava Feuer McCartney, a content marketing director. It takes more to stand out — and this exhibit did. “This is clearly a deep collaboration on all fronts,” she says.

Content marketers, this is why every job description you see highlights “cross-functional collaboration and communication skills.” Whether you have built expertise in-house, can enlist another brand or institution, or outsource to an agency partner, draft a preliminary vision, then invite those with needed expertise to join the collaboration.

HOW IT WAS DISCOVERED: Ava shared it with us, noting “The tech is great and responsive. It also has not, from what I’ve seen, gotten the press pickup it deserves.”

Notice something interesting in content marketing? Share it with fellow Content Marketing Institute readers. When you’re intrigued, puzzled, or surprised by an example, news, or something else in content marketing, share it with us by completing this form. Your submission may be featured in an upcoming Weekly Wrap.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute