As we reemerge from the locked-down, pandemic world, some of the energy that was pent up will be released in the form of dollars. Economists widely predict a coming boom, fueled by consumers free to once again go shopping.
Connecting with consumers
Whether those predictions come true or not, it’s always important for businesses to communicate with consumers and influence their purchasing decisions. A distinctive, unique brand is one of the most effective ways to connect with potential customers and separate your business from competitors.
If your brand is eligible for trademark protection, there are a number of sound business reasons to consider applying with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for registration.
Note: a trademark can be a word, phrase, design, symbol or combination thereof.
Making business sense
Let’s look at why it makes sense for businesses to get trademark protection for the company’s name and logo:
- The USPTO says that the most common reason it rejects trademark applications is that there’s a “likelihood of confusion” between an applicant’s mark and an existing trademark. While that standard can be difficult for some to meet, once it has been met, it ensures protection against future applications that will be confusingly similar to your brand.
- Though the USPTO issues trademarks, it leaves enforcement up to trademark owners. You can enforce your exclusive rights to use the mark with a variety of legal tools, including cease-and-desist letters and federal lawsuits to stop infringement.
- Like other assets in an IP portfolio, a trademark can appreciate in value as your business and reputation grow.
- As with other IP assets, trademarks can be licensed to generate revenue.
- Trademarks have no expiration date. They can be renewed as long as they’re being used in commerce.
Before launching a brand and submitting a trademark application, it’s important for business owners to conduct a complete search for similar marks.