A Nation Of Skeptics? Don’t You Believe It

If you’re chagrined that so many consumers are skeptical about the ads you create, here’s a little something to make you feel worse: Many of those same people are altogether credulous when it comes to ghosts and other oddball phenomena. A Gallup poll on adults’ belief (or disbelief) in the “paranormal” found 37 percent saying “houses can be haunted.” Nearly as many (32 percent) said they believe in ghosts, while somewhat fewer (21 percent) believe that witches really exist. Twenty-five percent think astrology is for real. Though 41 percent of respondents believe in extra-sensory perception, that’s down from 50 percent in a 2001 poll. Also on the wane is belief in channeling (from 15 percent of adults in 2001 to 9 percent in the new poll). So is belief in “mentally communicating with the dead” (28 percent then, 21 percent now). If consumers aren’t rushing to buy your client’s product in this lifetime, maybe they’re waiting for their next time around: 20 percent of respondents believe in reincarnation.