Saturday, March 28, 2015

Establishing Your Brand

Essential Legal Question You Should Ask Before Choosing a Brand Name

brand, brand building, establishing a brand
When entrepreneurs are starting a new business or launching a new product, one of the most crucial things to the launch is choosing a brand name. This name will help define your business and, in many cases, can become very valuable. While picking a great name is important, it is not enough to position the product or business for success. In order to make sure the path is clear to move forward with the name you choose, it is vital to answer some important legal questions to avoid getting into trouble.

Is Your Name Already in Use?

With so many businesses and products out in the market today, finding a truly unique name that no one else is using can be tough. In many cases, even if you started using the brand name first, if another company or product trademarks the name, it now belongs to them. When thinking of brand names, make sure to do a comprehensive, thorough search to see if the name has been trademarked. Using a trademarked name can get you into deep legal trouble and cost enough to bankrupt your business.

Does Your Brand Name Accurately Describe Your Business or Product?

Brand names that are overly descriptive and obvious can sometimes be very difficult to protect under trademark laws. Although this may seem the opposite of logic, it is more beneficial to choose a brand name that is less descriptive and less obvious – doing this will provide you with stronger protection when you decide to register and trademark the name. For example, The TV Store would be a very hard name to trademark for a business who sells televisions – an alternate name, such as Moving Pictures is much easier to protect under a trademark for the same business since it is much less obvious.

Will Your Name Give You an Advantage in the Market?

When business owners consider using brand names and want to trademark them it is often because the name gives them a competitive advantage in their industry. For example, products using the brand name Apple often have a large advantage over other electronics. Even if your brand does not have a reputation when developing a brand name, it is important to keep in mind that choosing a brand name is an important step to building that reputation and establishing your business and brand in the market.

Will You Protect Your Brand Name?

Just as others have trademarked names to protect them from being used by others, you also may want to consider protecting your brand name. If two companies have the same name, or products with the same name, it is possible for consumers to be confused. In order to keep your brand name unique and untouched by other businesses, you must register the name with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, or USPTO. This will stop others from using your trademarked name on their products.

Answering these critical brand name legal questions is a great first step in developing and choosing a great name. By following these guidelines, and using the expertise of legal professionals, it is possible to find an amazing brand name that will help to distinguish your business or product and help to build an amazing brand and reputation that can lead to amazing success.

Are you ready to start your own brand? Did you know that Stacy O’Quinn has helped dozens of individuals create their own small business that generate six figures every year? To learn more about Stacy and the opportunities he can offer you, please click here.

*Photo Courtesy of Brett Jordan via Creative Commons License

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