There are several aspects of your business that you need to refine, in order to ensure that it attracts the attention of your target audience. However, an important aspect of your business is its trademark. Standing out in an often saturated market can be difficult, so how do you differentiate your goods or services from those of your competitor? The answer is to use a unique logo and name for your business.
Selecting Your Trademark
It may sound obvious, however, when selecting your trademark, it is important that you choose something memorable. When your target audience sees or hears your company logo or name, you want them to immediately think of you.
It can be tempting to choose a trademark that describes the type of products or services you offer, however, such trademarks are difficult to protect and even harder to enforce against third parties. The reason that such difficulty is faced by business owners that want to use a descriptive trademark is that they would then gain an unfair advantage within a given sector by using a word that should remain free for others to use legitimately in connection with their business. The UK Intellectual Property Office and Intellectual Property Offices overseas will not accept descriptive trademarks for this reason.
However, descriptive trademarks that do not have a direct relation to the goods or services being offered are permitted. For example, a manufacturer of balls, would not be able to use the trademark “Bounce” as it directly describes the characteristics of the goods, however, if a drinks company wanted to use this name, they would not face the same issue as it in no way describes the nature or characteristics of the drink.
Alongside words that do not describe the nature of your goods or services, you may also use invented terms such as “LEGO”.
Once you have settled on a trademark, you must check to see if it is already being used or is too similar to one already in existence. Making these checks before investing in a website and producing any promotional literature is of paramount importance. Other traders may threaten you with court action if your trademark infringes theirs.
Once all necessary checks have been made on the trademark you would like to use, you can secure the right to that trademark by filling out a trademark application at the Intellectual Property Office in the country you wish to operate your business or make your products and/or services available.
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