Here is an interesting article discussing DIY research and research completed by professional research vendors.
This article provides an interesting and straightforward insight to when an agency or company would benefit outsourcing their research needs versus conducting research themselves. The main points are pretty straightforward. It is worth outsourcing research when the external company can benefit one of the benefit criteria:
Offer expertise and skills not avail¬able within the DIY market research team.
Provide validated methods and innovative approaches.
Alleviate workload for time-strapped DIY marketing research teams.
Guarantee the anonymity of respondents and confidentiality when this is an issue.
Provide credibility to research results.
Offer access to target populations of interest.
Another interesting point that the article discussed is a reminder that DIY research can be just as pricey if not more than outsourcing research.
This is a great source to use when deciding on how to get research completed for advertising projects in the future.