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Robert Samples

R. Robert Samples has more than 20 years’ experience counseling major clients, including Fortune 55 companies and others, by providing strategic research on public issues, litigation and media polling.

His expertise brings added value to Solution Center clients in the fields of health care, law, the automobile industry, the airline industry, technology, finance, government and manufacturing.

Samples is probably most recognized for his work as the principal owner and president of RMS Strategies (RMSR)—a major marketing and research firm with offices located in Charleston, WV, Arlington, VA and Cincinnati, OH.

Under his direction, RMSR grew from the local firm he joined as Vice President in 1985 to a respected firm with a prominent presence in the nation’s capital and the mid-Atlantic region. He expanded the company’s services in litigation research and jury consulting, principally in product liability cases. His strategic counseling with clients was instrumental in helping establish RMS Strategies as a well-respected name in research consulting and as a member of the American Society of Trial Consultants.

Samples developed and directed numerous national and statewide media polls including: The Business Confidence Index for the Washington Business Journal, The West Virginia Poll on major policy issues for the Associated Press, WSAZ-TV and the Charleston Daily Mail; The Business Poll on business-labor issues for The State Journal; The Coal Poll on coal and environmental issues; and, The Cable Poll, a national survey for the cable television industry.

Samples organized and led strategic litigation research for clients in major national and regional high-profile lawsuits. His firm built a strong reputation for litigation work, which ranged from change of venue surveys to jury selection, mock juries, mock trials and courtroom graphics.

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Robert Samples' Recent Blogs

Begin With Non-Adversarial Focus Groups

Originally published in The West Virginia Record's "All Things Jury" on January, 2008.

“Get started early.” “Just do it.” “Do it now.” These sentiments are excellent applications for so much of our personal and professional lives. In terms of preparing a case for litigation, early research efforts are also a key to success.

Change of Venue Opportunities Are Often Overlooked

Originally published in The West Virginia Record's "All Things Jury" on November 27th, 2007.

Predicting Damages: Not the Best Use of Jury Research

Originally published in The West Virginia Record's "All Things Jury" on November 21th, 2007.

Jury research is a powerful tool if properly utilized. When designing a research project, experienced researchers focus on the issues that are best addressed through the research process, while recognizing its limitations. In addition, it is the duty and obligation of researchers to assist litigators in managing client expectations from the research effort. This is, indeed, a tough task at times.

Jury Research As Standard Practice?

Originally published in The West Virginia Record's "All Things Jury" on October 30th, 2007.

Due diligence. Preparation. Undoubtedly, this is the most important responsibility that counsel owes to his or her client. Inadequate representation due to poor preparation nearly always results in a negative outcome. Worst case scenario is the conviction of a criminal client who is innocent. In civil cases, inadequate representation could result in a settlement that is too high (or too low). Sometimes, the client retaliates by filing a legal malpractice suit.

Witness Likeability Equals Credibility

Originally published in The West Virginia Record's "All Things Jury" on August 4th, 2009.

One subject that I haven't addressed to any significant degree in this column is the credibility of witnesses at trial and during depositions. This issue, of course, has great importance for the trial team. More importantly, it is an area that can be addressed by assisting witnesses through communications training.