Your Name, Your Brand – Why you should protect your most Valuable Business Asset
Your brand is more than just your name or logo it’s your most valuable asset. Your brand is every aspect of how customers interact with your product or service. The look, feel, touch, color, sound—all of these components make up the brand and can be protected as intellectual property. That is why you should protect it by registering it as a Trade Mark.
Return On Investment
The long-term return on investment of a great brand is that if you can protect it, you can carve out a niche market for your product or service. You can keep evolving the underlying technologies that make your product or service while your brand can continue to grow and build in value.
Trade Marks can be registered forever. Unlike patents, which expire after a period of time, Trade Mark registration can be renewed every 10 years and can be on your business asset register as you continue to use and protect them.
Rebranding is Costly
We have seen on many occasions the undoing of companies who fail to secure their Trade Mark rights. Just take the recent example of “Isola” launched by Megan Gale for Seafolly. This name had to be rebranded to “Melia” not because the label “Isola” was not selling (quite the opposite) but because the trade mark could not be registered in the United States. Unfortunately, as the “Isola” brand could not be trade marked internationally, Seafolly decided to discontinue the relationship. After investing so much time and money in your marketing and commercialising your brand, this is a prime example of not what to do.
Disputes – Trade marks and business names
If you discover that someone else is using your name, the first thing to do is to undertake a search, determine the goods or services (or both) in relation to which they are using the name and, if possible, whether they have stronger rights to the name than you do. That is, have they registered the name as a trade mark, did they establish a sufficient reputation in the name before you? If you believe your rights are stronger than theirs, the next step is to write a letter asking them to stop using the name, explaining that you have a reputation in the name or a registered trade mark, or both. Disputes can be avoided by ensuring that your brand is registered as a Trade Mark and you have an intellectual property strategy.
Consider your Brand Strategy
Think carefully about your global brand strategy. We would only be too happy to assist with carrying out a search of your brand name to ensure it can be protected globally.