The importance of Brand Protection
Your Trademark is how customers identify with you, your product, and your service. Your Trademark can take many shapes and sizes. As they say, a picture tells a thousand stories, so does your brand can accommodate all of these into one simple message is the key to success.
It is essential to protect a brand like any other valuable business asset. Brand Compliance & Trade Marking is necessary for any business because failure to protect the brand can diminish its value and ruin its reputation. Trademark is also an effective communication tool as it helps to convey the intellectual and emotional attributes and messages about the company, its importance, and products and services using a single logo. Using a design as a trademark allows the global recognition of the brand irrespective of the language; for example, the famous “Swoosh” design of the Nike company recognised in all countries. A trademark distinguishes the brand from the competitors and helps to catch the consumers’ attention.
Brand protection is significant because even bad rip-offs can damage its reputation. For example, if a competitor either copies your brand or rips it off badly to advertise its products and services, it can ruin its reputation. Under such a scenario, the customers who prefer your brand may end up going to the copycat competitor, or worse still, it can ruin your company’s reputation if the competitor sells substandard products and services under your brand name.
Brand Compliance & Trade Marking process
Though there are consumer laws that can help a competitor try to copy the brand name or logo, trademark registration offers the most effective form of brand protection. Trademarking your brand is a sign that helps to distinguish your products and services from that of others. In addition, registering a trademark provides you with a legally enforceable right to stop other traders from using your Trademark to advertise similar goods or services without authorisation. Trademark infringement occurs when someone attempts to use a registered trademark to sell similar products or services without permission. Under such circumstances, you can use a simple cease and desist letter to stop the infringement from continuing. If the letter fails to stop the violation, you can enforce other methods.
A registered trademark protects your brand’s greatest assets and stops the competitors from ruining its reputation. It helps minimise future enforcement costs and sends out the message that you are serious about protecting your brand, thereby enhancing its value. However, registering your Trademark is not the end of everything. You should still be vigilant about the competitors’ activities and take immediate action if you suspect something wrong. Delay in taking action will make it harder to stop the infringement.
Trademark? Registered trademark symbol? Or something else?
So? Brand Compliance & Trade Marking? Should your brand be listed as a Trademark™, Registered®, or Copyrighted©? A trademark is a symbol, a word, or series of terms used to represent a company, a brand, or a product. The term “trademark” indicates that the organisation that owns the Trademark has applied to register it with the appropriate agency. The “TM” symbol should be used for any intellectual property that fits one of two categories:
- It has not registered so far, or the registration has been filed but is not yet official. You can find out more about the TM symbol in Australia here.
- The ™ is not proof of ownership, but it lets people know that you are claiming the rights of the trademarked symbol or words. To ensure proof of ownership, you must prove that you were the first to use the Trademark and that if anyone else tries to use it, it can cause material harm to you.
The Registered® can use once your application for a trademark has approval officially. The ® symbol is proof that you have registered your Trademark. It gives them the freedom to use the Trademark in any way they desire without fear of getting copied by others and seeking damages against its unauthorised infringement. It also prevents others from selling similar products or services under your brand name. In other words, listing your symbol or words as Registered® establishes you as the owner of a Trademark and protects you against the damage posed by the unauthorised infringement.
Benefits of Brand Compliance & Trade Marking
It is hard to distinguish a brand in a marketplace crowded with competitors’ products. Trademarking your brand or brands is the best commercial communication tool to attract the consumers’ attention and distinguish your products and services from competitors’. Customers familiar with your Trademark immediately recognise your brand name and stops looking for alternatives. The brand acts as a critical decision factor for a consumer’s purchase decision. Trademarks provide value beyond your core business and pave the way for expansion from one industry to another, such as personal care to clothing or eye ware. If you may desire, it can also aid in acquiring your company from a more prominent firm.