Unless you’ve lived under a boulder for the past couple of decades, you probably have heard about trademarks. In most scenarios, the word is connected to a brand name, and it seems to signify that the brand has some type of legal protection.
Trademarks and regular individuals don’t interfere that much. However, if you own a startup or want to be a successful entrepreneur, you should pay a lot more attention to trademarks. Your brand name, logo, and design are unique symbols that represent your business.
As the business grows and gathers more attention, you will want to make sure the very essence of your brand is well protected. So,
What Is A Trademark?
In short, a trademark is a legal tool that allows organizations and individuals to protect their Intellectual Property (IP). Trademarks protect logos, symbols, and branding, which is why they are important for any type of business. Think about Nike and their logo – it looks simple and it’s very easy to remember.
Plus, anyone who sees that swoosh sign automatically thinks of Nike. However, to make this automatic reaction possible, Nike had the logo, brand name, and other elements trademarked. Otherwise, anyone could’ve used their symbols, making branding a pain.
Does This Mean My Brand Will Be Successful If I Get It Trademarked?
A trademark is not a guarantee for success, but it is an extra layer of protection if your brand becomes famous worldwide. Plus, there are other reasons why you should think hard about the importance of a trademark for your startup.
1. Brand Recognition
When you trademark the name, the logo, and/or the design of the brand, you state to the world that those symbols belong to you. As a result, no other company (national or international) can use the same or similar symbols on their products.
As a result, your brand cannot be copied or stolen without having the proper tools to fight back.
2. Added Credibility
When customers buy a product sold under your brand, they trust the trademark. This means they trust they’ll receive the same level of quality and service they know your company practices (in the case of existing clients).
Trademarks also help your brand get mentioned online or in discussions between friends, family members, or acquaintances (word of mouth). Therefore, if a person trusts the brand, it will know how to recommend it to another person.
Lastly, by protecting your brand, you show the world you mean business. It means you are the first to trust the brand and the success that will follow. After all, who would want to protect something that isn’t worth it?
3. It Can Become A Valuable Asset
As the business grows and matures, a trademark will become an extremely valuable asset. Let’s take Disney as an example. Their brand wasn’t immediately successful, but nowadays businesses have to pay in order to use their characters, their brand, and any other protected IP items.
Plus, as customers start to trust the brand, you can diversify the offer, or can even go into franchising by licensing. Not to mention that trademarks can be sold or transferred!
Trademark registration needs to be your immediate thought once you start a business. Without proper legal protection, it will be difficult to build your brand online or on social media platforms without worrying about the competition or any other actors interested in stealing original ideas.
Plus, a trademark is permanent, as long as you apply for renewals. So why wouldn’t you want to have that extra peace of mind and go on with building a successful business instead of dealing with IP theft and all its consequences?