What’s in a name?
Why are we named Artik? This all goes back to 1985. Fresh out of York University and chose to make my own designs on T-shirts. I then sold them to stores and in flea markets. Originally named the company ‘Winterfield Design’, honouring my Dad’s family name. The problem in those days, before the internet, was the Yellow Pages were the main game in town. When customers wanted to find anything, especially when they were ready to buy, they would look in the Yellow Pages. There was a great advantage to having a name that started with an A. With a name starting with an you showed up first on the listings. My ‘Winterfield Design’ was deep with the W’s. I ventured on finding a new name for my company.
The search for a new name.
I thought of the art of dying fabrics, BATIK. A process of applying wax to some areas of fabric that resist the dye and then dying the whole fabric. Thus creating a fabric designs. I always associated the word batik with the hippies and ‘The Grateful Dead’ colorfully dyed T-shirts. So I took the words ART+BATIK=ARTIK. The name Artik was borne. Being the early days of the internet I was able to get the URL www.artik.com this is one of Artik’s most important assets.
Here comes Google!
Now I was at the top of the listing of the Yellow Pages, of course many companies took this idea to the extreme. Moving companies in particular were battling for position. ‘AAAFast MOVERs’ and ‘AAAA Quality Movers’ and so on. Then the internet started to take hold. I still remember in the 90’s talking to my Yellow Pages sales person and telling him the internet is coming. He could not grasp the change that is coming. The Yellow Pages company itself mostly missed the boat on the early internet. Google swallowed the Yellow Pages like the the whale swallowed Jonah. Unlike Jonah the Yellow Pages was not saved in the end. I am aware that the Yellow Pages does have some web presence now but it’s a tiny fraction of the business that Google does. Nowadays Google is our most important marketing driver. The majority of people turn to a Google search when looking for any product. It takes money and consistent work to show prominently on a Google search. Gone are the days where a name started with A is any help.