A brand is your company’s most valuable asset. After all, your audience will recognize you. Over time, the brand has invaluable power and prestige.
As a result, it makes sense to protect your brand only as much as you can. If you don’t, other people can illegally hijack your brand and the benefits it offers.
This article explores the best way to secure your brand with a trademark.
How to protect your brand name with a trademark
A trademark is any word, image, or symbol that identifies a company or organization over others. Think McDonald’s yellow “M” arcs or Disney’s signature “D”.
Securing a company name with a trademark is vital because it confirms the company as the rightful owner. If someone else uses it, the owner can take legal action against him. The absence of a trademark is a free invitation to others to exercise your intellectual property rights.
Wondering how to secure a company name with a trademark? Here is a simple three-step process.
- Check if your trademark is available
The first step is to check if your business name is already registered in another unit. You can confirm by checking Electronic Trademark Search System (TESS) Database of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
When searching, it’s also important to look for names that sound or look similar to yours. Your application is likely to be rejected if your product name is too similar to be confusing or misleading.
This also illustrates the benefit of applying for a trademark when you start a business. It gives you the freedom to change your name if the trademark has already been taken.
- Fill out the trademark application
Once you know your trademark is available, the next step is to fill out an application. You can either register your trademark with an existing company or reserve it for future use.
The application form contains basic information such as the applicant’s name, address and nationality. The most important part, of course, is the drawing or name of the trademark itself with a thorough description. You must also indicate the products or services covered by the trademark.
You can check USPTO application page forms and additional information.
The final step is to submit the application form to the Electronic Trademark Application System (TEAS). You have two options: Standard or Plus archiving.
TEAS Plus has a lower fee ($ 250 per class or products or services) and a higher chance of success. However, if your brand does not match any of the presets listed in the requirements, you will need to apply for the TEAS standard using a $ 350 fee.
Tips for protecting your product name
Once your trademark is protected, it will be much harder for business name thieves to steal your brand. However, that doesn’t stop them completely. Some still find a way to do it, especially if they are in another country.
The most important thing is to stay alert. Here are some tips to help you protect your brand name.
- Always use your product name
Using your brand as much as possible is crucial because it will strengthen your business as the ultimate owner. It helps the audience associate your business with your name so that a copy is created when people know it better. Plus, it’s just part of good marketing.
- Track your brand regularly
Tracking a brand mention online with tools like Google Alert is an effective way to track its usage. You can immediately detect illegal use so you can take legal action quickly.
If you notice a violation, you must act immediately before the matter escalates. You would be surprised that most infringers are not aware of trademark laws.
- Extend your trademark protection to other countries
Your trademark protection should not be limited to your home country. Thanks to our global economy, it is alarmingly easy for a unit in one country to infringe on your brand without consequences.
It is especially important to leave a trademark in China. Not only are they production facilities, but they also adopt the “first file” rule.
The safest way to protect your brand is to use a unique, real name. This makes copying much more difficult than a brand that uses common words. In addition, it also facilitates trademark application.
To protect the trademarks of company names, it is important that you use them at all times. Bitly to help you do this by enabling custom branded products. Not only will your audience recognize your brand immediately, it can also increase trust by telling them exactly what the link is for.
Create an account and take advantage of shortened branded product links today.