Understanding the appeal of luxury brands in psychological and artistic terms helped Warc's subscribers get to grips with changing attitudes and purchase habits in the sector over the course of this year.

Warc's most popular article of 2013 covering the premium goods category, in terms of total views across the year, was Making a luxury brand, which addressed the central role these items play in the human search for happiness at both the conscious and subconscious levels.

Second spot went to a piece showing how Mercedes-Benz reached a younger audience through a game where a driver was "trapped" in Google Street View, and by letting social media users shape the plotline of a TV ad in real time.

Relatedly, The art of luxury – in third place – argued balancing accessibility and brand integrity is not best served by being elitist, but by embracing artistic creativity and sensitivity, as Burberry and Hermès have done.

This perspective was reinforced by the final entry in the top five, discussing how Cartier and Louis Vuitton – among others – have moved beyond the confines of print to run high-concept campaigns across TV and the internet.

Separating these articles was a case study outlining how Art Series Hotels challenged a category norm by scrapping check-out times and allowing visitors to stay in their room for free until it was needed by the next guest. This idea also won the Warc Prize for Innovation 2013.

For more details about the most read papers on Warc in 2013, visit our Most Read page.

Data sourced from Warc