Yesterday, Marketcopywriter reported on “Pulizzi Orange,” the hot color trend sweeping #CMWorld.
Today we’ll get the back story on the blazing color. I caught up with Joe Pulizzi, Ann Handley and Robert Rose via email to get the lowdown on Pulizzi Orange’s power and influence.
Marketcopywriter: When did you start wearing “Pulizzi Orange”?
Ann Handley: You don’t just “wear” Pulizzi Orange, Lorraine. You embody it. You
become it. It’s not just a color: It’s a movement.
You can try and resist. But what’s the point? You will be assimilated. Resistance is futile, as the Star Trek Borgs have pointed out. Little known fact: Their words were originally about the P.O. movement. Look it up.
Joe Pulizzi: I wore orange for the opening keynote at our first Content Marketing World in 2011. I walked out on the stage in an orange NASA jumpsuit. So, the color was literally part of Content Marketing World from the first second.
Robert Rose: Well, as Joe will tell you I’m a bit of a rebel here. I think the Pulizzi Orange is a bit like the Cleveland Browns. If you get too involved—you’re just going to be disappointed. So, I tend to use the Pulizzi Orange sparingly on ties or socks as an accessory.
Marketcopyriter: What’s the back story on #CMWorld and the color orange?
JP: In 2005 I was swimming with my two boys on vacation in Florida. We were playing with an orange volleyball. It’s then when it hit me…if I ever launch a company someday, the brand would be this beautiful orange. It was mesmerizing.
In 2007, what is now CMI was launched with the bright orange logo, and CMW followed in 2011. People were drawn to the color, sometimes for no apparent reason. As I saw this “moth to the flame” behavior, I quickly rid myself of clothes that were without orange and replaced them with this majestic color.
Marketcopywriter: Does wearing the hazmat hue make you feel more confident and
AH: Everything I wear makes me feel more confident, which is what most clothing is designed to do — isn’t it? Especially as a speaker. Because no one feels confident naked on stage. Except… oh, never mind.
RR: It’s kind of like wearing a country traffic light. You know it’s going to stop people and get their attention, but you’re not really sure it’s supposed to.
Marketcopywriter: Do you plan to wear orange every day at #CMWorld?
AH: Again with the “wear.”
RR: Yes, or I’ll get in trouble.
Marketcopywriter: Any truth to the rumor that orange is the “new hack”? That wearing orange at #CMWorld is a networking shortcut—providing entree to conference power circles?
AH: I can’t answer that question because I’ve taken an oath. Sorry.
I kid. No. The truth is that CMW is like a homecoming, no matter who you are or what you’re wearing.
JP: All the pros know. Wearing orange at #CMWorld is the way to get ahead. People notice you—the more orange the better. People gather around attendees with the most orange. Pictures are taken.
Marketcopywriter: How many Pulizzi Orange power pieces did you pack?
RR: I’ve got four ties, five pairs of socks, a pocket square, and an orange t-shirt that I’ll wear on the “team day.”
AH: P.O. is more of a mindset than an actual packing list. Your suitcase might be stuffed full of all the orange you can find at your local shopping mall…but the truth is it’s how Orange you are inside that counts.
Marketcopywriter: Do you have any “lucky orange” items?
JP: I can’t answer that.
AH: No, but this question makes me wish I did.
RR: Yes, in fact one of my favorite ties is orange, and was given to me by a client in Mexico City. I wear it each time I give a content marketing workshop for luck.
Marketcopywriter: Your best retail sources of orange “It” items?
JP: Amsterdam, the Cleveland Browns gift shop and various Ohio State prisons.
RR: Ebay. Or any sports memorabilia shops in Cleveland. They all feature orange teams.
Marketcopywriter: Fendi, Prada, Comme des Garcons and other fashion designers showed all-red looks for fall 2017. Rumor has it next season’s collections will show all-orange looks. Thoughts?
AH: P.O. defies seasons and moods and trends. Don’t concern yourself with collections; worry more about conversions.
JP: The red simply didn’t work. Now all these retailers want to make money in 2018…so the flight to orange is on. Predictable, but I get it. I have a feeling that orange will be the color of 2019 as well. Did you know Prince’s favorite color was orange? True story. Uncovers a lot.
RR: When Boss comes out with the orange line, or Ferragamo puts out orange shoes, I might come around.
Marketcopywriter: Anything else to say about “Pulizzi Orange”?
JP: It was a happy accident, but now I think we all can see the potential. Greeting card lines, vodka, hummus…the possibilities are endless.
RR: The best thing about it, is how happy it makes Joe. He’s truly happier when he’s wearing orange. And, I think that’s kinda neat.
Do You Wear Orange at #CMWorld?
Do you sport “Pulizzi Orange” at Content Marketing World? What are your thoughts on the eye-catching color. Let us know in a comment.
Photo of Joe Pulizzi courtesy of Joe Pulizzi
Also published on Medium.