I heard a claim that people with lower voice pitch are perceived as more credible than people with higher pitch.

Is there any research on this?


1 Answer 1


There's quite a bit of research related to this topic:

  • Male CEOs with deeper voices make more money and manage larger companies (Mayew et al., 2013).
  • People are more likely to say they would vote for a political candidate with a deeper voice (Klofstad et al., 2012; Tigue et al., 2011).
  • People rate lower-pitched voices as more persuasive than higher-pitched voices (Apple et al., 1979).
  • Somewhat contrary to the above findings, people tend to raise the pitch of their voice when they are in a position of authority (Ko et al., 2014).
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    $\begingroup$ Great answer! It would be interesting to see experimental, non-correlative work on this. Do people rate persuasive passages read by a deep voice as more persuasive than the same passage read at a higher pitch? Etc. $\endgroup$
    – Krysta
    Dec 17, 2014 at 13:57
  • $\begingroup$ Some of the work I referenced above is experimental, e.g. they manipulated the pitch of the voices. $\endgroup$
    – Josh
    Dec 17, 2014 at 14:39
  • $\begingroup$ In fact, looking back on it, only the study with the CEOs is correlational. In all of the others, they either manipulated the voices in some way, or manipulated the position of authority (in the Ko et al. study). $\endgroup$
    – Josh
    Dec 17, 2014 at 14:49
  • $\begingroup$ True, I was including self-report in that bucket (where it doesn't necessarily belong). $\endgroup$
    – Krysta
    Dec 17, 2014 at 14:55
  • $\begingroup$ @josh Have you seen any research on whether this varies based on gender? $\endgroup$
    – Ana
    Dec 18, 2014 at 3:07

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