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“We don’t use the trademark to market anything. It’s our identity.” – Larry Harvey
A trademark is a form of intellectual property that consists of of a recognizable sign, design, or expression which identifies products or services of a particular source from those of others, trademarks are used to identify services they are also known as service marks. Said differently, a trademark is a symbol, word, or words legally registered or established as representation of a company or product.
Why do you need a trademark?
I. Prevent Future Legal Problems- A business without a trademark can cause lawsuits from other companies that did register under the same name, sign, slogan, etc. If that happens then you will be required to altering the name of your business and brand as a whole. This also protects your company from having some body else use your name and brand services.
II. Permanent- Once you get a trademark for your brand/business it is set in stone. A trademark is permanent, with only a need for a periodic renewal. But other than that you are all set. When obtaining a trademark it is necessary to use the services of Intellectual Property service provider with a stellar reputation.
III. Brand Recognition- As a startup business/brand you want to make sure that people know who you are and what you offer. Getting a trademark also makes your brand distinct and establishes an identity among competitors. This is your intellectual property and this prevents your rivals or potential rivals from copying or stealing your brand.
What are the categories of trademarks?
I. Generick Mark- A generick mark is also known as a proprietary eponym, is a trademark or brand name that, due to its popularly and significance. It correlates to a general class of products or services, usually against the intentions of the trade marker’s owners.
II. Descriptive Mark- A trademark that usually composed of a word or words that describe a product or that identify the characteristics of a product and are generally considered t o be known as weak marks.
III. Suggestive Mark- A suggestive trademark is a distinctive, but not descriptive, mark which does not describe a product, but suggests or references it, requiring consumers to exercise imagination to connect the mark with the product.
IV. Fanciful Mark- Also known as a “made-up” or “coined” word. Fanciful trademarks are words that are invented and never existed before or hand any meaning before they were adopted.
V. Arbitrary Mark- Generally has an ordinary dictionary meaning, but has no special meaning in relation to the goods or services to which it is applied, other than source-identifying function.
If you have not filled out an application for a trademark to protect your brand now is the time to do so. But it is important to keep in mind that there is a legal process that involves registering a trademark. Find out more here:
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