Case 1: Opryland Surprises A Regular Customer

Why is it that we as consumers are captivated when brands go above and beyond of what’s expected of them to deliver great stories of exceptional customer service? If anything, it’s because they’ve somehow reminded us that despite being an entity driven by revenue and sales, there’s a human side to them. A reminder that it’s an organization made of people with real human emotions.

In the words of Maya Angelou, a world-renowned poet, and intellectualist

I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

The following case is the first of an ongoing series dedicated to highlighting times where brands/companies went above the fold to deliver exceptional customer service.

Warning: This is not for the weak minded, for the faint of heart. These are exceptional cases, worthy only to the above average mind. Proceed with an open mind, clarity of thought and brace for the inevitable “wow”.

It goes without saying that your regular customers are the foundation of your business. As such, taking care of them is not just the right thing to do. It also makes for good business.

Consider the case of regular Gaylord Opryland hotel customer Christina McMenemy, who stayed at the resort three years in a row for the annual BlissDom conference.

During each stay McMenemy found herself entranced by one of the features in her hotel room—an alarm clock that played light music; as in, the kind that you’d experience in a highend spa.

McMenemy says, “You probably think I’m insane to obsess over a clock radio.” But, her rationale for her fondness for this item was that she had never slept better than she did while using it.

For three years McMenemy tried to find the exact model clock from her hotel room, but to no avail. McMenemy had nearly given up hope when she messaged the company’s Twitter page during her most recent trip to Opryland.


Resigned to her fate, she attended the conference and let the alarm clock hunt go.

But upon returning to her room she was surprised to find not one but two spa clocks and a letter with her name on it.

Opryland recognized an opportunity to make sure a long-time customer had one of the best experiences ever. And they didn’t just win a customer for life; they also bought plenty of goodwill with folks at the conference (and beyond) who subsequently heard about the story.


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