When creating your marketing audio ads and voiceovers with the right voice actors, one of the first things to do is decide between female or male voice actors. While at first thought it may not matter which to use, ultimately, the voice you choose will have a big impact on the success of your ad.
Why Choose Male Voice Actors?
Most people listening to your ads may not consciously pay attention to the voice they are hearing, but the specific voice actually does make a strong impression. It can also make a big difference. Male voice actors will convey a different perception than female voice actors. Sometimes, this feeling can make all the difference in the success of your ad. According to business.com, male voice actors convey a neutral, authoritative and factual impression, while female voices offer a more emotional, compassionate voice. If you are looking for that commanding, forceful voice full of facts and logic, a male voice would be your best bet. A male voice can also lead to trust and reliance because of the factual, nonbiased impression it gives to the audience.
More than Just a Male Voice
Once you’ve decided on using male voice actors, you’ve now got to decide what type of voice. Depending on your product, service, and audience, even within the male voice actors, other characteristics are important. Do you want a younger, friendlier voice to resonate with a more youthful, millennial crowd? Maybe your ad calls for an older, wiser voice to convey trust and experience?
Even once you have decided on the age bracket, there is still more. Male voice actors who have a deeper voice convey more of that authoritative tone. Those with higher pitches and tones will gain more of a feeling of friendship and trust. The friendlier the voice, the more of an ally it becomes. According to buisness2community:
“Men’s voices are associated with neutrality, with authoritative, factual information,” explains Arthur Chu, a Cleveland-based artist who’s done voice-over work for brands like Safeway and Intel.The voiceover you want for some kind of authoritative instructional video, or some asserting dry historical fact, is going to be that baritone, somewhat monotone, slightly stern voice.”
The voice of your audio ad is as important as the ad itself. Think about how different some of the most effective ads would be if there was a different voice in them. In the case of something like security systems, deep male voices can be more effective. They have that ingrained tone of security already. However, a male voice probably won’t be very successful at selling lipstick or perfume. Be careful, though, and watch out for outdated stereotypes, especially with the shift towards gender neutrality and sexual stereotyping.
With today’s surge towards audio ads, it is the prime time to focus on audio and getting that perfect voice. Though many listeners may not realize the voice they are listening to has so much influence, it actually does. The right voice can solicit valuable trust from your customers. It can become memorable and lead to a deep connection between customer and product.
Think about this one famous voice in a sea of male voice actors. Almost everyone is familiar with the Allstate voice. That’s the voice of Dennis Haysbert and his deep soothing tones make the listener feel safe and secure. Dennis Haysbert‘s deep, engaging voice is laced with integrity, competence, and reassurance. Everyone wants to listen and believe in what he has to say. The audience feels safe and taken care of, and that is the goal of insurance.
The key takeaways here are thinking about what you are selling or promoting and the image you want to convey with your ad. Trust, competence, friendliness, connectivity, authoritativeness? Match your male voice actors to these characteristics and watch the magic happen.
8 Actors With Very Deep Voices
These iconic film stars are known for their deep, baritone voices and they have lent their talents to voiceovers, live-action roles and animation.
A deep voice in an actor conveys authority, power, a large frame, and a person of knowledge and leadership. It is an attention-getter. Actors with such great voices are generally viewed as serious, well-established, and demanding respect, thought, and consideration for their performances.
1.James Earl Jones
James Earl Jones has one of the most prolific and identified voices in cinematic history. Most people recognize his voice as Darth Vader in Star Wars and as Mufasa in Disney’s The Lion King. Ironically, Jones had to overcome stuttering at a young age to develop the articulate voice that is so beloved today.
He is the only actor to win two Emmys in the same year in 1991. He was also nominated for an Academy Award for his portrayal of Jack Jefferson in The Great White Hope in 1970 and won an Honorary Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2011.
On The Electric Company, Morgan Freeman was Easy Reader, where his charismatic deliberate voice helped kids read from all across the United States. In Bruce Almighty and Evan Almighty, Freeman was the voice and image of God. His unmistakable voice is so recognizable, it has been used in many movies, as a narrator, and in commercials.
Often a narrator, commentator, and voice actor for many programs, Freeman narrated the opening ceremony of the 2016 Invictus Games. More recently, his voice has been added to Google’s free traffic navigation.
Credited for making what some describe as the greatest movie of all time, Citizen Kane, Orson Welles is considered one of the top filmmakers in history. He was the voice of the “War of the Worlds” radio program, which depicted the arrival of aliens invading earth. With authority and diction, his voice was heard by thousands of people who believed it to be true, fooling listeners and causing wide-spread panic.
Welles is known for two illustrious quotes. One being the teary-eyed quote from Citizen Kane – “Rosebud” – and the other from his famous Paul Masson ads, “We will sell no wine before it’s time.”
The original 007 and arguably the best James Bond in the Ian Fleming series, the Scottish born actor has a voice that sounds like he has been drinking a bottle of whiskey and baking tirelessly in the sun. With his gruffness, iconic accent, and movie star appeal, Connery has been a leading man and sex symbol for years.
Connery has a subtle slur that is hard to miss and it is indescribably distinctive, as heard as the voice of the dragon in Dragonheart in 1996.
5.Michael Clarke Duncan
Best known for his role as John Coffey (J.C.) in The Green Mile, alongside Academy Award winner Tom Hanks, Bonnie Hunt, and Sam Rockwell, Michael Clarke Duncan portrayed the life of a prisoner on death row who had the distinct ability to change people’s lives with a mere touch of his hands.
His heavy voice was reminiscent of acting great, James Earl Jones. When he spoke, he spoke effortlessly with great authority. Duncan voiced over 31 cartoons and video games.
British actor Christopher Lee, with his deep, monotone, strong voice, is arguably the best Dracula of all-time. Because of his voice and his presence, Lee fell victim to typecasting, playing the role of either Dracula or villains in several movies.
Lee’s voice is also heard on various heavy metal albums and as characters in video games. He was the voice of Dooku for the animated television series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars in 2009.
The ultimate bad boy with a warm heart, Vin Diesel has helped lead the Fast and Furious franchise to astronomical success. The bouncer turned actor, with his deep, raspy voice and his muscular physique, got his start as Private Caparzo in Saving Private Ryan.
From his role in Saving Private Ryan, executives took notice of his deep bellowing voice, and subsequently, he landed the voice in the Warner Brothers film, The Iron Giant. Diesel has also voiced Groot in both of the Guardians of the Galaxy movies.
Acclaimed actor extraordinaire, known for various films including Billy Budd, for which he was nominated for Best Supporting Actor, is probably known by comic book admirers as General Zod, the arch-villain in Superman 2.
Stamp had one of the most iconic quotes by a villain in a superhero movie when he told Superman in a soft, profound voice, ” Take my hand and swear internal loyalty to Zod.” But the son of Jor-El tricks him and crushes his hand, defeating him in the end.
What do deep voice actors tell us about a brand?
Deep voice actors are surprisingly versatile. Depending on gender and tone, deep voice actors can bring very different meanings to brand messages. Many famous deep voice actors have easily identifiable voices and familiarity leads to trust.
Think about some of the most famous campaigns that have used deep voice actors to represent their brands. Visa chose Morgan Freeman to be their voice. L’Oreal recently named Viola Davis as a brand ambassador. Jeff Bridges was the deep voice behind Duracell’s “Trusted Everywhere” campaign and, as some of us just found out, Ving Rhames lets Arby’s customers know that they’ve got the meat. But beyond the celebrity and familiarity, what about these voices draws us in?
Strength, Competence, Trust, and Size?
The Poli Sci department at the University of Miami recently joined forces with the Biology department at Duke to study the effect that a political candidate’s voice has on voters. As you might expect, candidates with deeper voices are more appealing to the average voter, but why, exactly?
A similar study conducted by The Chinese University of Hong Kong’s Department of Psychology and Brain and Mind Institute along with the National University of Singapore’s Graduate School for Integrated Sciences and Engineering found that through the ear, the mind perceives older and deeper, particularly male, voices to be more trustworthy.
It may be hard to believe that our minds are susceptible to such narrow judgments. Now, we all want to believe that we are open-minded and not so judgmental. Do we really assess a person’s trustworthiness solely on the pitch of their voice? Undeniably, these subconsciously derived assumptions are repeated in numerous studies. Also, they go beyond the perception of the individual to the product.
Researchers at Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech released the findings of their study, Sounds Big: The Effects of Acoustic Pitch on Product Perceptions. During the course of the study participants repeatedly indicated that everything, from sandwiches to electronics, was perceived as larger when paired with a low pitch voice or music.
Is a Deep Voice Actor Right for Your brand?
Subliminally, a deep voice registers in the brain as more trustworthy, competent, stronger, and representative of a larger product. So, by all accounts, it can be assumed that any brand wants the perception of being more trustworthy. However, you should consider the following before settling on the pitch that best suits your brand:
- Who is your target audience? – The identity of your target audience will tell you if a deep voice actor will suitably represent your brand. Is your target audience 13-year old girls interested in floral design? A James Earl Jones-esque voiceover may not fly.
- What is their need? For instance, are they looking for reliable auto repair services? Insurance? Healthcare? Any product that requires a significant financial investment or fulfills a need based on necessity or safety.
- What emotions will you evoke in your audience? Confident? Inspired? Fear? Certain products, like health insurance, funeral services, or legal assistance, might cause anxiety in an audience. However, a strong, confident, deep voice actor’s narration can quell these negative feelings and inspire confidence.
Know Your Audience
One of the key components in finding the right voice is knowing your audience. Of course, this is crucial in every part of advertising, but especially here. Remember, you want your audience to connect with your ad, and the difference in female or male voice actors can do this. Maybe your particular ad is calling for the use of male voice actors. With the right audio and the right voice, this connection will come easier. Once your audience connects, you’re on the road to building that community of trust. This will ultimately lead to sales and success. So think about your audience, and then find that perfect voice match.
A good rule of thumb, but of course there are exceptions to everything, is that your audience’s majority gender can dictate the voice you want to use in your ad. For instance, if you are selling make-up or female hygiene products, you probably want to stay with a female voice. If you are selling men’s shaving cream, male voice actors will probably be more effective. Of course, if the product is neutral, this may be more difficult to determine, but perhaps one of the best gauges of what type of voice to use is your audience. After all, that is who you are trying to reach and connect with.
Remember, though, these traditional roles are shifting. You may hear female voices promoting cars, science concepts, and the military which were all traditionally male-dominated fields. Male voice actors can now venture into some of the traditionally female roles, too, such as ads for laundry detergent or diapers. It just makes it all the more important to have the right voice.
The Right Voice Will Set the Tone
In conclusion, the right voice will set the right tone for your ad, getting you on the road to customers, sales, and success. Trust is a big factor, and the more trustworthy your voice actors are, the more loyal your customers may become. Think about your audience, your product, and the emotions or tone you want to convey. You’ve probably spent a lot of time writing the perfect copy for your piece, now you need the right voice to complete the process. Male voice actors with the perfect pitch, timber, and tone can be just the right fit.
Ten articles before and after