“What sounds beautiful is good?” How employee vocal attractiveness affects customer’s evaluation of the voice-to-voice service encounter

  • Silke Bartsch


Although drivers of service quality and satisfaction in a service encounter setting have been analyzed extensively, most studies focus on a face-to-face encounter situation. Since customers in voice-to-voice encounters do not have any visual information they can rely on, the authors aim to examine the impact of a call centre employee’s vocal attractiveness on customer’s pre- and postencounter attribution and evaluation. Based on findings from psychology, linguistics and phonetics about vocal stereotyping hypotheses were derived. Utilizing an experimental research design (N=256), results show that perceived employee vocal attractiveness has significant positive impact in the pre- and postencounter (1) on customer’s attribution of employee’s expected and perceived effort and abilities as well as (2) on customer’s expected and perceived encounter satisfaction. Implications for managers and researchers were drawn as these findings provide fundamental insight for a deeper understanding of voiceto-voice encounters.


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Copyright information

© Gabler | GWV Fachverlage GmbH, Wiesbaden 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Silke Bartsch
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für MarketingLMU MünchenDeutschland

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