What is Ad-Hoc Market Research? | National Market Research Company

Market research projects come in many shapes and forms.

There are 2 core types of studies in market research: 

  1. Tracking studies or long-term projects
  2. Ad-hoc market research projects

So, what is a typical day like in market research? The answer is: "it depends.” What does it depend on?

It depends on the type of market research team you work for (client-side or supplier side), your role and title in your organization, the industries or methodologies your organization specializes in, and a number of other variables.

In this blog post, our market research company will dive into ad-hoc research studies and how they differ from their longitudinal counterparts.

What is Ad-Hoc Market Research? | Market Research Firm Watertown NY


Ad-hoc Market Research vs. Longitudinal Market Research

Ad-hoc market research projects are typically unique short-term projects designed to tackle a specific objective.

Whereas longitudinal or long-term research is designed to study participants over a longer period of time or aim to measure a specific objective continually.

In short, ad-hoc is usually one-and-done, while longitudinal projects are more continual research programs.


Benefits of Ad-Hoc Market Research

1. Specificity

Ad-hoc research is carried out for a specific purpose on behalf of market research clients. This type of research offers high-quality data solutions to any problem that your company may face.

Ad-hoc market research studies can be conducted as part of an omnibus survey or it can be custom-designed to fit a client’s needs. 

2. Saves money and time

Ad-hoc research studies are a one-time project that quickly addresses a company’s research needs within a short period of time.

In the long-run, this type of market research project saves an organization money by delivering results quickly and efficiently without continuously sending out surveys over an extended period of time. 

With that being said, consult with a market research company like, Drive Research to determine what is best for your business. Oftentimes we shave costs on tracking studies or regular research studies as part of a package.

3. Customizable

A custom-designed ad-hoc market research study can be conducted to help clients apply useful solutions to any problem. Our experts can design a survey and select a specific method to carry out the research.

4. Guarantees flexibility

Ad-hoc research projects allow the end-user to modify the research and add on additional questions in order to accomplish their research goals and objectives. 

5. Streamlines decision-making

The data from an ad-hoc study is used as a decision-making tool. The reporting data is used to measure the current state of a company.

Depending on the client’s needs, it can show a preview of areas to improve. Once the data is analyzed, a client and their team can take action to make those improvements in order for the business to run more efficiently.

6. Applicable for any business

This type of market research study can be conducted for any industry.

Some of the industries that have used ad-hoc reporting and analysis include:


Examples of Ad-Hoc Market Research

Ad-Hoc Market Research Example #1

A local bank reviews its monthly data report and recommendations it received from its market research partner. The report has identified in-branch experience ratings have continually declined over the past 6 months across its four regions.

The bank commissions a study to conduct two focus groups in each of four different regions in the country to further explore and dig into these issues.

Ad-Hoc Market Research Example #2

One of the restaurant's locations in Connecticut is widely out-performing the other 77 locations nationwide.

Revenue at the location has been continually improving in the past 12 months, and no data exists to explain why.

The management team commissions a 400 complete image and awareness survey of residents who live within 15 minutes of the location.

The survey tests objectives such as:

  • The awareness of the chain and its competitors
  • Perceptions of the restaurant in relation to nearby competitors
  • Likes and dislikes if they have dined there

This study provides the management team with specific data to understand why the restaurant in Connecticut is a profit-leader.


Examples of Tracking Studies

Longitudinal Market Research Example #1

A local bank wants to track the satisfaction of its customers over-time.

Each month the bank commissions a study to collect 100 surveys completes from a random set of new customers using an online survey. Month-to-month and year-to-year results are compared.

Continual Market Research Example #2

A chain restaurant commissions a massive mystery shopping program that involves secret shoppers visiting the restaurants to dine.

Following their experience, they fill out an evaluation online, which asks them to rate their visit.

A total of 4 shops are done each month at each of the restaurant's 78 locations nationwide each year.


Conduct Ad-Hoc of Continual Market Research with Our Team

Drive Research is a market research firm serving organizations across the United States and beyond. Our company manages both ad-hoc and longitudinal market research projects for our clients.

For more information about our market research services contact us below!

  1. Message us on our website
  2. Email us at info@driveresearch.com
  3. Call us at 888-725-DATA
  4. Text us at 315-303-2040

Author Bio George Kuhn

George Kuhn

George is the Owner & President of Drive Research. He has consulted for hundreds of regional, national, and global organizations over the past 15 years. He is a CX certified VoC professional with a focus on innovation and new product management.

Learn more about George, here.


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