Post #2: Completion of Reading, Outlining Literature Review, and Further Updates

Hello, everyone!

I am almost done with my research project, and I have been working hard this past month to complete my reading and plan out how I wanted to organize my literature review. I have read over 50 academic papers and had over 100 pages of notes, ranging from topics such as brand loyalty, advertising, the luxury goods markets across the globe in countries such as South Korea, Japan, Iran, and the U.S., the psychology of conspicuous consumption, and more. Consolidating all the information and choosing which papers/concepts were the most relevant to the motivation for my paper has taken a lot of thought, but I will outline below what my plan is for executing my literature review.

I begin my literature review with my abstract. Following this is an introduction to the literature review. This introduction begins with emphasizing the importance of the luxury goods market in the global economy, providing statistics to its impact, as well as highlighting its resilience even during economic downturns. I posit to the reader how luxury goods/luxury brands differentiate themselves from non-luxury brands, in order to suggest some inner-thought on their own opinions of luxury goods. I then highlight how my literature review contributes to a relatively small but expanding body of research into the market for luxury goods, namely towards understanding the motivations for luxury good consumption and management/marketing strategies developed by luxury goods in order to increase profits. I will make sure to state that my literature review includes papers/two books that I deemed most relevant to the direction of my paper, of understanding the role/differences advertising has in the luxury fashion brands segment in comparison to normal firms, and that my focus was to review primary research papers only, as many provided empirical research, which was of interest to me in terms of consolidating.


I then write about the foundations of advertising. I attempt to define advertising, outline why firms advertise, and explain the three main perspectives on advertising: Persuasive, Informative, and Complementary. I also summarize research findings on trends between advertising of sales and advertising and price, forming a basic understanding of what motivations normal firms have in developing advertisements. I then state that while these foundations are useful in understanding advertising in many firms, some goods need to be advertised in a different way (conspicuous goods) in order to be effective, in order to introduce readers to luxury goods.


I follow the foundations of advertising section with a review of luxury goods. I attempt to define luxury and luxury goods. I summarize the development of the modern day luxury fashion brand market, emphasizing reasons for its growth in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. I further develop an understanding of luxury goods by listing what characteristics luxury researchers have associated with luxury brands. I then dive into why people buy luxury goods, emphasizing three dimensions of luxury brands that motivate consumption: functional/physical, experimental, and symbolic. I emphasize the development of emotional connections between consumers and luxury goods, and connect this with self-concept. This leads to another discussion of brand loyalty and premium pricing, in which I hope to clarify luxury brand’s premium pricing.


After this section, I include research findings on the relationship between luxury fashion brands and advertising. I emphasize that conventional marketing strategies do not apply to luxury fashion brands, as these brands emphasize exclusivity, which helps to fuel brand loyalty. Yet, in a more connected world where information is readily available, I explain that luxury advertising is necessary with growing competition in the market, even amongst established brands. I also cover social media’s role in luxury brand advertising, as I believe it is an important marketing outlet for the future of luxury brands.

I have so far completed the advertising section, though I intend to return to this section as I continue writing the literature review. I have finally finished going through my notes, and have organized different findings/characteristics of over 50 papers into themes that I listed above. This work has been strenuous but rewarding, and is the reason why I have made this post so late, as I wanted to update everyone once my plans had been finalized. I’m hoping to complete my literature review early this week, so that I can revise and edit. I will certainly finish my literature review by August 24th, and I will post my summary as soon as I can.

Thanks everyone, and if you have any comments/questions, please leave them below!