When a brand delivers a remarkable experience that leaves you thirsty for more, we call that a THIRST® moment. Seeing communications through the eyes of the customer is essential when helping our clients create THIRST. It’s our job to be critical, so when a customer service experience stands out to us, it’s worthy of applause.

Customers are counting on the relationships you create with them to last long after the product or service has expired. There are people who do their job, people who do their job well and then there are people who infuse their profession with passion and pride — those are the people that will move your brand forward.

To the following companies and employees, we applaud you for great customer service.

Fairway Green, Servicing the Triangle + Charlotte, NC

Renovate the bathroom, check; replace the kitchen sink, check; build a retaining wall, check. Greg considers himself a bit of a handy man. But when it comes to lush green tall fescue, he leans heavily on the lawn care professionals at Fairway Green and this year he leaned hard. Excessive moisture was causing bouts of brown patch, plus erosion from downpours. Greg admits, “I was one of ‘THOSE’ customers this year. I was constantly calling to request advice, ask why my lawn was taking such a beating and question if they were diabolically impacting the weather patterns to wreak havoc on my yard.” At every turn, Greg was met with individuals who were turf-savvy, proactive, educational and above all patient with his frustration. The deep green rolling meadows of his front yard speaks for itself.

Two green thumbs up to the fine folks at Fairway Green; they’ve created an advocate out of one tough customer.

customer service


Shwood, Beaverton, OR

Shwood Eyewear represents a perfect combination of individuality, uniqueness and nature. So of course, Chris Schwing was an early-adopter and Shwood has counted on him as a loyal customer for years. What they didn’t count on was how clumsy he can be.

Chris explains, “The first pair broke pretty easily but the product was new and the glasses weren’t crafted as well as they are today. They replaced them for free. No questions asked. The second pair suffered a snapped frame during a cycling trek. By this time, they had a customer service department. That process was very smooth. When they saw the glasses were cracked and a repair would not live up to the standards, they offered a $50 discount on a new pair. Done deal. The third mortal wound was also user error. I contacted customer service once again and they responded within 1 business day. I sent my glasses in and they repaired them for free.”

In business, and in life, things are going to break – it’s how you handle the cracks and the problems and the repairs that make the difference. These are the tests that make relationships stronger and more sustainable, just like a pair of Shwood sunglasses.

customer service


Ace Hardware, Raleigh, NC

You know the tune, “Ace is the place with the helpful hardwaaare maaaan.” It’s more than a jingle – it’s their brand. This is a perfect example of what we call Employee Brand Alignment. The folks at Ace understand that it takes pride and patience to be truly helpful.

Chris Lien explains, “On a recent trip to my Ace, my old truck wouldn’t start. My helpful hardware man, Nate, heard my truck’s pleas and came outside. It was 35º and rainy. He thought it was the starter. “Might just need to give it a tap to wake it up.” He went in, grabbed some tools and tried to wake up my starter. It wasn’t the starter.

We moved onto the carburetor. Nate went back inside, grabbed some starting fluid off the shelf. It wasn’t the carburetor.

We moved onto the battery. We tried to jump it. It wasn’t the battery.

We were both baffled. I thanked Nate for the 80th time. He said, “No problem. My mom would be mad if she knew I didn’t help.” I told him to tell his mom he went above and beyond. I told him I figured the truck needed to just sit for a while, so I went home.

When I returned, she started right up. I let her idle while I went inside to tell Nate I got her running. I shook his hand and thanked him for the 81st time. As I walked out the door, I knew Nate at my Ace Hardware was worthy of this applause. He is my helpful hardware man. Bar none. Thank you, Nate (82).

customer service


Creative Painting Systems, Serving the Triangle, NC

Exterior house painting finally made it to the top of the list. I started the interview process, which included painting companies with contract carpenters (which I needed badly to replace an ailing bay window). First came the painter, then the carpenter, then the carpenter and the painter … it got a little confusing and quickly became obvious what factors were key to my decision: 1) Pride in their work, 2) Their ability to communicate with me and 3) Their ability to communicate with their partners.

George from Creative Painting Solutions was our clear choice. With the best warranty in the business and nearly 20 years experience, he had a bit of a waiting list, but I appreciated that.

He aligned my expectations from the beginning by sharing his crew’s schedule with me. He was careful not to overbook them plus he accounted for some weather delays, the mark of a seasoned professional. We picked a slot that worked for both of us and he stuck to it.

From day one, the relationship was smooth. He took time to get to know us, play with our pup Mousse and shared pictures and stories about his dogs. He educated me along the way: why satin vs. dull vs. gloss, to trim or not to trim, etc. His carpenter was top notch. The bay window was a custom build but he had been around the block a few times, so it didn’t scare him a bit.

Throughout the process, George sent pictures of the painting activities and he was finished right on time. Everything went so smooth I kind of disregarded the “walk-thru.” I didn’t really look close until a week later. Figuring I missed my chance for a few minor touchups, I texted George and asked if he could get some more paint so I can touch up a few areas. He called immediately and said, “No No No Susan, that’s not your job. That’s our job. We’ll pick up some paint and make it right.” Not only did he make it right, he brought us some squash from the garden!

customer service

Each of these companies truly understand the value of the customer relationship. We congratulate them and happily consider them all Referral Worthy