Wisconsin School of Business

Amber Epp

Assistant Professor - Marketing

Amber Epp is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s School of Business. She completed her Ph.D. at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her research focuses on understanding collective phenomenon including the interplay of family and relational identities, collective goals, network agency, and group decision-making. Her work has been published in the Journal of Consumer Research and the Journal of Marketing, and she has co-authored book chapters on qualitative data analysis and family consumption behavior. Professor Epp’s dissertation received the inaugural Sidney J. Levy Award for outstanding Consumer Culture Theory research. Her work on how to maintain brand loyalty when family life is practiced across distances, as well as her research on new parent decision-making, has been funded by the Marketing Science Institute. Epp also serves on the editorial review boards for the Journal of Marketing and the Journal of Consumer Research.

Her teaching interests include consumer behavior, services marketing and marketing management.
 

Selected Published Journal Articles


Epp, A., & Velagaleti, S. (2014). Outsourcing Parenthood? How Families Manage Care Assemblages Using Paid Commercial Services.
Article AbstractParents are outsourcing an expanding array of care practices to the marketplace (e.g., planning birthday parties, teaching children how to ride a bike, instructing kids about the birds and the bees). Sociologists document a care deficit, resulting from dual-earner households, distance from extended family, and consumerism, to account for outsourcing. These studies, as well as those in consumer research, however, focus almost exclusively on daycare or eldercare decisions. As such, we know little about how parents decide what is acceptable to outsource in a marketplace where an expanding range of caregiving practices are “for hire” and where definitive cultural discourses are absent. Based on depth interviews with 23 families, our analysis uncovers complex care assemblages that are shaped by tensions of control, intimacy, and substitutability. The resulting framework explains parents’ strategies for minimizing outsourcing tensions and challenges what we know about the relationship between the marketplace and family life.
Journal of Consumer Research (41)
Epp, A., Jensen Schau, H., & Price, L. (2014). The Role of Brands and Mediating Technologies in Assembling Long-Distance Family Practices. Journal of Marketing (78), 81-101.
Epp, A., & Price, L. (2011). Family Time in Consumer Culture: Implications for Transformative Consumer Research.
Article AbstractIn this chapter, we use family time metaphors adapted from Cotte et al. (2004) as an organizing framework to provide an explicit cultural, social, and temporal frame for understanding contemporary families’ experience of family time. We posit that families, like individuals, employ a range of metaphors for thinking about time, and in turn, these metaphors empower, constrain, and frame the role of consumption in pursuit of family time and well-being. We draw on our own research and that of others to unfold how these idealizations and metaphors structure both family and policy meanings and practices and to uncover tensions that can be addressed through Transformative Consumer Research (TCR). This book is part of the Transformative Consumer Research is a movement initiated in 2005 at the Association for Consumer Research.
Transformative Consumer Research for Personal and Collective Well-Being, 599-622.
Epp, A., & Price, L. (2011). Designing Solutions around Customer Network Identity Goals.
Article AbstractBecause companies fail to account for collective and relational goals in customer solutions, there is often a mismatch between firms’ solutions and those customers envisioned. Understanding customer networks’ integration processes is essential to improving solution design. This investigation draws on depth interviews with 21 families, our focal customer network, to generate collective and relational narratives that contextualize their accounts. The authors identify four customer network integration processes: assemble offerings around prioritized goals, alternate participation, concurrent participation, and assemble offerings around separate coalitions. Further, findings reveal that the resulting mix of integrated products and services, labeled the solution, is shaped by customer network identity goals, goal management approaches, and constraints. The authors conclude with recommendations for how firms can use this information to improve solution design, identify new network partners, and revise value propositions.
Journal of Marketing (75), 36-54. doi: 10.1509/jmkg.75.2.36.
Epp, A., & Price, L. (2010). The Storied Life of Singularized Objects: Forces of Agency and Network Transformation. Journal of Consumer Research (36), 820-37. doi: 10.1086/603547.
Thompson, B., Koenig Kellas, J., Soliz, J., Thompson, J., Epp, A., & Schrodt, P. (2009). Family Legacies: Constructing Individual and Family Identity through Intergenerational Storytelling. Narrative Inquiry (19), 106-134. doi: 10.1075/ni.19.1.07tho.
Epp, A., & Price, L. (2008). Family Identity: A Framework of Identity Interplay in Consumption Practices. Journal of Consumer Research (35), 50-70. doi: 10.1086/529535.
Arnould, E., & Epp, A. (2006). Deep Engagement with Consumer Experience: Listening and Learning with Qualitative Data. The SAGE Handbook of Marketing Research

Presentations


ACR Doctoral Symposium ( 2013 ) Consumer Culture Theory Session

Speaker Series, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ( 2013 ) Outsourcing Parenthood: How Families Manage Care Assemblages Using Expanded Services

Association for Consumer Research Conference ( 2012 ) Outsourcing Motherhood: Managing Assemblages of Care

ACR Doctoral Symposium ( 2012 ) Consumer Culture Theory Session

Speaker Series ( 2012 ) Connected Families: How Consumption Practices Survive Distances

Association for Consumer Research Conference ( 2011 ) Connected Families: How Consumption Practices Survive Distance

AMA-Sheth Foundation Doctoral Consortium ( 2011 ) Qualitative Data Analysis Session

AMA-Sheth Foundation Doctoral Consortium ( 2011 ) Young Scholars Panel

European Association for Consumer Research conference ( 2010 ) Eliciting and Analyzing Collectively-Told Narratives for Consumer Research

AMA-Sheth Foundation Doctoral Consortium ( 2010 ) Young Scholars Panel

Speaker Series ( 2010 ) Designing Solutions around Customer Network Goals

Speaker series ( 2010 ) How Customer Networks Integrate Resources to Accomplish Identity Goals: A New Approach to Platform Design

AMA Summer Educators’ Conference ( 2009 ) Transitioning from Doctoral Student to Junior Faculty: Best Practices

Consumer Culture Theory Conference ( 2009 ) The Idealization of Family Dinner and Post-Feminist Strivings

American Marketing Association Winter Educators’ conference ( 2008 ) Authoritative Performances: How Families Use Firms’ Operand Resources

Association for Consumer Research conference ( 2008 ) Agency, Identity, and Materiality: The Storied Life of a Family and Their Table

Consumer Culture Theory conference ( 2008 ) Consuming Together and Apart: Sharing as Being a Family

Association for Consumer Research conference ( 2007 ) Idealized Family Time: Collective Identity Interplay in Vacations

European Association for Consumer Research Conference ( 2007 ) Family Identity and the Meaning of Home

Association for Consumer Research Conference ( 2006 ) Enacting the Family Legacy: How Family Themes Influence Consumption Behavior

European Association for Consumer Research Conference ( 2006 ) Reflecting Family: Home Furnishings as Consumption Symbols of Family Identity

National Communication Association Conference ( 2006 ) Family Legacies: Constructing Individual and Family Identity through Intergenerational Storytelling

Association for Consumer Research Conference ( 2005 ) Rethinking Family Consumption: An Exploration of Family Identity

International Conference on Marketing and Development Proceedings ( 2005 ) Senses of Family as Judged from Cross-Country Comparisons of Family Public Policies


Undergraduate Courses


Services Marketing (MKT 490), Fall 2005.

Services Marketing (MKT 490), Fall 2006.

Marketing Management
Course DescriptionProvides a framework for evaluating marketing problems and developing a marketing strategy. Customer, company, competitive, and collaborator factors are emphasized as foundations for marketing decision making. The key aspects of product, pricing, distribution, and promotion strategy are also examined.
(MKT 442), Summer 2006.

Introduction to Marketing (MKT 341), Summer 2004.

Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 305 Section 1), Fall 2008.

Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 305 Section 2), Fall 2008.

Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 305 Section 3), Fall 2008.

Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 305 Section 1), Fall 2009.

Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 305 Section 2), Fall 2009.

Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 305 Section 1), Fall 2010.

Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 305 Section 2), Fall 2010.



Graduate Courses


Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 705 Section 1), Fall 2009.

Consumer Behavior
Course DescriptionAnalysis of the theories of consumer behavior and their application to marketing decision-making. Psychological, economic, anthropological and sociological perspectives are integrated to enhance understanding of consumer acquisition processes.
(MKT 705 Section 1), Fall 2010.



Editorial and Reviewing Activities


Journal of Consumer Research - Since June 2013
Editorial Board Member

Journal of Marketing - Since December 2012
Editorial Board Member

Journal of Consumer Culture - Since January 2010
Invited Manuscript Reviewer

Journal of Consumer Psychology - Since January 2010
Ad Hoc Reviewer

Alden G. Clayton Doctoral Dissertation Proposal Competition - January 2010 - December 2010
Ad Hoc Reviewer

ACR/Sheth Foundation Dissertation Grants Competition - January 2010 - December 2010
Ad Hoc Reviewer

John A. Howard/AMA Doctoral Award Competition - January 0001 - November 2012
Ad Hoc Reviewer


Photograph of Amber Epp

Amber Epp

 
Assistant Professor | Marketing
(608) 262-5599
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