SAME Hosts Focus Groups for Market Research

You Talked.  We Listened.

At the 2016 JETC in Phoenix (May 24-26), SAME hosted three Focus Groups for attendees of the conference.  The focus groups were facilitated by an outside group, Trailblazer Market Research, a company that works with many non-profit organizations.

The three focus groups were sorted into a Young Members group, made up of members 39 years and younger; a group of members who have attended JETC more than five times; and a third group of attendees that represented a cross-sampling of attendees.  The groups met at times during the conference that did not conflict with education sessions and attendees were provided light refreshments. 


There where three primary goals for the focus groups:

  1. What are the main reasons people attend the Joint Engineer Training Conference & Expo (JETC)?
  2. Brainstorm potential new names for the SAME Small Business Conference, which now includes a larger presence from the Department of Veterans Affairs in addition to the Army Corps of Engineers, and other federal agencies represented each year.
  3. Are SAME’s current webinar offerings valued, and what are members looking for in webinar content?


What Do Like Most About JETC

  • According to focus group participants, different people come to JETC for different reasons, but the main reason is networking.
  • When asked which aspects of a conference are most influential in your decision to attend a conference – our attendees said: 1) Other Networking Events; 2) Sponsored Networking Events; 3) Keynote Speakers; 4) Continuing Education; 5) Desirable Location.
  • Another comment echoed about JETC, is that if you can get the right military people there, the rest will follow.


Small Business Conference Branding

In regards to branding the Small Business Conference, new names suggested included:

  • FAEC – Federal A/E/C/ Small Business Conference
  • Federal Small Business Conference
  • FASTC – Federal A/E/C/ Small Business Training Conference
  • SAME Federal Small Business Conference
  • Federal Small Business A/E/C Conference
  • Small Business – Federal Focus Symposium


Do you have a naming suggestion? Let us know at!


SAME Webinar Content

As for SAME providing webinars to its members, our focus group attendees said that webinars are a good for certain types of content and that ultimately, webinars are a good way to share information. The majority of our members think SAME webinars are very good.

Many participants say they gather in conference rooms to view them as a group.  Our members also would like to see us partner more with IFMA, DBIA, PMI, and possibly the USGBC for webinar content. 


Interested in Sharing Your Ideas?

In the future—most likely at either JETC or SBC—we will hold additional focus groups as needed.  If you are interested in helping SAME with Market Research, contact