This year if you call Butterball's Turkey Talk Line for some cooking advice, you might get a male voice on the line. For the first time, Butterball is enlisting the help of men as well as women for its Turkey Talk Line during the holidays. And the turkey purveyor is seeking the first male talk-line spokesman as well. The talk line, which is 32 years old this year, has long offered advice to anyone overwhelmed by making the perfect turkey for Thanksgiving Day and the rest of the holiday season.
It has been improving its services, last year launching a smartphone app, Facebook live chats, Pinterest posts, and other social media tools. But the line, which has grown from six operators to about 60 since it launched in 1981, has never hired men before. The company says it wasn't specifically excluding men, but it usually relied on word-of-mouth to hire its talk line operators and its hires were always women. "It's the perfect time [to change the approach], because we have seen more and more men involved in Thanksgiving dinner," says the director of the line. When the talk line started, only about 9% of calls that came in were from men. But now, about one in every four calls are from men, she says.