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Discover the power of trademarks, 5 surprising benefits for your business

By James Wan

What you need to know (in a nutshell)

  • Trademarks create immediate value and can grow in value as a business expands and improves.
  • Trademarks give businesses a geographic advantage and can prevent them from encountering marketing problems when expanding into new locations and services.
  • Trademarks can prevent huge financial waste by helping businesses avoid trademark infringement and the associated costs of changing a business name or logo

Full Article

Founders often invest time and money to pick an ideal business name and logo, which are fundamental components of a startup. These names/logos create customer loyalty by signifying the quality of their products/services as they’re typically seen first.

Businesses often overlook the need to safeguard their intellectual property such as logos, business names and catchphrases. The US Trademark Office (USPTO) allows for national trademark registration which small businesses should take advantage of

Here are 5 reasons why they must secure a trademark.

Marks carry immediate value

A trademark is a rare asset that increases in value as the company grows. Advertising, product packaging and customer service can all utilise trademarks to ensure customers identify your business clearly from competitors - an issue with potentially deadly consequences. Moreover, it has other benefits like being bought or sold; licenced out and even used for collaterals when applying for loans related to businesses.

Pepsi’s iconic logo has become a valuable asset, likely worth billions. Without trademark protection, Pepsi would have encountered counterfeit products in other locations which could’ve reduced the brand recognition and harmed its commercial success. McDonald’s not only operates its restaurants but also grants franchises & licenses for its trademarks.

Trademarks create geographical advantages for businesses

Not filing for a nationwide trademark may limit your logo and name to the region of operation. This presents difficulties when attempting future expansion, due to another business having national registration. Think ahead about the potential marketing issues you could face; seek trademarks that can cover current operations as well as any desired developments or services in other areas.

Burger King is a business that has been affected by geographical boundaries in various ways. It cannot open stores within 20 miles of the original Burger King, an independent burger shop with regional protection from Mattoon, Illinois. Meanwhile, this lesser-known Burger King can’t use its name for another branch outside their area; it must have a different identity including logo and title.

Burger King attempted to enter the Australian market with their existing name but was blocked by a trademark. This prevented them from using it despite having millions of dollars in resources and they now sell Whoppers under Hungry Jack’s instead.

Trademarks can save substantial amounts of money

Trademarks stop businesses from encountering issues. Unbeknownst to many small companies, they may receive an insistent demand letter requesting legal action if their business name is not altered right away due to a firm across the nation. This communication can ask for hefty compensation and necessitate significant website changes, new cards of introduction, and promotions modifications; it also means losing goodwill on social media such as Facebook, Twitter etc.

How can you succeed?

An attorney will research the USPTO for the same/similar names & logos prior to filing a trademark. If something similar is identified, they may advise making minor alterations such as the font or colour of a word to differentiate from the prior registered trademark