To grow, any field of research must both encourage newcomers to work within its boundaries, and help them learn to conduct excellent research within the field’s parameters. This paper aims to examine whether the existing body of neuromarketing literature can support such growth. Specifically, the authors attempt to replicate how a newcomer to the field of neuromarketing would go about orienting themselves to the field and learn how to conduct excellent neuromarketing research.
A total of 131 papers, published in the areas of “neuromarketing” and “consumer neuroscience” were downloaded and then identified as conceptual or empirical in nature. A separate database was created for each type of research paper and information was recorded. For both conceptual and empirical papers, the citation details, notably year of publication, journal, journal ranking and impact factor were recorded. Papers were then descriptively analysed with regards to number of publications over the years, content and journal quality.
It is found that interest in the field is growing, with a greater variety of topics and methods appearing year on year. However, the authors also identify some issues of concern for the field if it wishes to sustain this growth. First, the highly fragmented literature and the lack of signposting makes it very difficult for newcomers to find the relevant work and journal outlets. Second, there is a lack of high-quality, user-oriented methodological primers that a newcomer would come across. Finally, neuromarketing as it appears to a newcomer suffers from a lack of clear guidance on what defines good vs bad neuromarketing research. As a large majority of the reviewed papers have appeared in lower-ranked journals, newcomers might get a biased view on the acceptable research standards in the field.
The insights from the analysis inform a tentative agenda for future work which gives neuromarketing itself greater scientific purpose, and the potential to grow into a better-established field of study within marketing as a whole.
This paper forms part of a special section on Neuromarketing.
All authors contributed equally to this paper. The authors are grateful to Terry Daugherty (the Editor) and two anonymous referees for their excellent comments and suggestions.
Lee, N., Chamberlain, L. and Brandes, L. (2018), "Welcome to the jungle! The neuromarketing literature through the eyes of a newcomer", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 52 No. 1/2, pp. 4-38. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJM-02-2017-0122Download as .RIS
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