Turkey on Thanksgiving. It’s the most traditional, trusted meal of the year. What could convince me to entrust this sacred meal to a little-known direct marketer’s website? Here’s the story of Dr. Strangebird: How Cajun Grocer got me to stop worrying and trust the turducken.
It was no small feet to get me to do it. Our first chance to host the family Thanksgiving came in 2011. My mom and her brother had swapped hosting the holiday for my entire life. This was the first time my mom tapped out and asked my wife and me to host.
It was a big deal. I’m not someone who plays things too traditional, so my first thought was “Ooh! We can get one of those turduckens John Madden is always talking about!”
Hold on, that’s not John Madden talking about turducken. This is John Madden talking about Turducken. (The fact that I can find roughly 2 million videos of Frank Caliendo making fun of John Madden, and not one of the nationally televised event he’s spoofing, tells you half of what you need to know about the Internet.)
So a turducken is a deboned chicken, stuffed inside a deboned duck, stuffed inside a deboned turkey, and there’s Cajun cornbread and sausage stuffing between all those layers. It’s like a big, delicious, flavor-filled meat roll.
When I tried to find a turducken, I was out of luck — I had no idea where to get one of those in Levittown (we live in the one outside Philadelphia). Then I looked online, and there was this site, Cajun Grocer, that promised to sell me an authentic Cajun turducken, shipped up from Louisiana in a Styrofoam box packed with dry ice. …
I don’t know how that plan would sound to you hosting your first big family Thanksgiving, but you could say I was skeptical.
So what did Cajun Grocer do to convince me to trust them with our Thanksgiving?
1.They Dealt Openly With the Questions
This is classic catalog-style direct marketing. Cajun Grocer clearly realizes that trust is one of its biggest hurdles. It’s a niche company operating via direct order, and the website isn’t exactly the height of sophistication (although it’s a lot better today than it was in 2011). They need to convince visitors that the company is both honest and competent enough to get the order there by Thanksgiving, still frozen.
So Cajun Grocer spends a lot of space on its website describing who they are, how they handle your turducken, shipping methods, EXACTLY when you should order to get it by Thanksgiving, and more. The dedicated Turducken landing page is essentially a point-by-point take down of your buying objections.
2. Social and Media Proof
There are no less than 10 seals on the Cajun Grocer homepage showing me it’s a website I can trust. They have a graphic and link for an article where their turducken was voted best overall value in The Wallstreet Journal.
They also have a video segment from Good Morning America about ordering your Thanksgiving turkey online. Not only does the video include the Cajun Grocer turducken being shown on good Morning America, but the guest specifically says that, yes, you can buy a turducken online and it will be delicious.
In addition, Cajun Grocer links to over 4,000 Bizrate reviews on Google, the vast majority of which give it five stars. That’s a good way to show me they’re not stuffing their own review box.
3. Content Proves Competence
Interestingly, Cajun Grocer does not try to convince me it’s a mom and pop chasing their life-long dreams. There’s no owner shown on the site. And you know, if that’s not part of your DNA, I appreciate not pretending it is. There’s nothing wrong with just being a good merchant and showing me you care about your products and service. Professionalism earns trust too.
But Cajun Grocer still provides a lot of content to show they know Cajun cooking. There are recipes, the 1-888-Crawfish helpline, and special sections for a lot of well-known Cajun dishes (at least well-known to a Yankee like me). And beyond that, they have a blog from Marcelle Bienvenu, “The Queen of Cajun Cooking” exploring more Cajun recipes.
You come away from the website convinced of two things: This is a real Louisiana Cajun food shop, and they know exactly how to get you a turkey/duck/chicken thing by Thanksgiving.
And I have trusted them to do that twice now. The first time was culinary fireworks. The second turducken is thawing now to be the star of our meal tomorrow.