Branding and brand expansion has become a major trend in many hospitality markets worldwide. However, the specific role and the relevance of brands as value driver for hotel companies, customers, and investors presents itself as widely ambivalent and diffuse phenomenon, as there appears to be an inconsistency and confusion amongst practitioners and academics about the perception of what the concept of the hotel brand or hotel branding really is or should be and whether the topic of brand relevance might be over- or underrated in the hotel industry. The purpose of the chapter is to examine the current state-of-the-art of branding and brand management in the global hotel industry within the hospitality research agenda and to explore the level of integration and representation of brand-related topics within the academic field of hospitality. A systematic literature review was conducted in four top tier hospitality journals in the period of 1996-2018. The study followed a four-step screening process of identifying, selecting, and critically appraising relevant research on the topic, identifying three key areas that have been explored in detail applying a content analysis approach. This resulted in the overall finding that the topic of branding and brand management in the hotel industry appears to be an under-researched issue within the field of hospitality research and that many questions related to the economic value of hotel brands remain currently without reply.