A trademarked business is an official firm acknowledged by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). If the business is small or not, you have better odds of success if the name of the company has its trademark. Furthermore, the common law and USPTO protect your brand.. So, in case someone infringes on your rights, you can win in court.
Down the line, if your business becomes a leader in your field, your trademark could be worth millions.
Alternatively, you can hurt your business and lose a lot of money if you don’t protect your trademark and use it properly. So, without further ado, here are eleven small business trademark mistakes that cost you money.
1) You Think That You Can Work On Your Trademark By Yourself
You may think that the trademarking process is easy to complete: you just apply for it. However, it’s not that simple.
Your business may be small, and you might not have many funds available. Nevertheless, you should consider employing a lawyer specialized in intellectual property rights.
You don’t have the experience particular attorneys do. As a result, if you do it by yourself, you may spend more money or you may fail.
In comparison, the success rate for people who are using a specialized counsel for trademark applications is higher according to a North Carolina University report. People with legal representation have 83% chances to get approved, while the rest have 57%.
Intellectual property lawyers can help you with detailed information regarding your application, trademark search, infringement laws, and more.
2) You Think That Your Trademark Is Strong Enough On Its Own
Trademarking your brand’s name is not enough to protect it. You may want to look for infringements from other brands. Search in the USPTO database regularly. Also, Google your brand and see what appears. Don’t forget about social media platforms. You can charge anyone for monitoring your trademark if you have the money.
3) You Didn’t Pair Your Trademark With Your Socials And URLs
When you obtain a trademark for your company, remember to secure the brand’s name on social platforms and URLs. Otherwise, someone might take advantage of your trademark and social media. In the worst case, they might start posting inappropriate or controversial content that may damage your brand’s reputation. You can even lose your company because of it.
So, if you don’t want to spend a lot of funds, time, and effort trying to reclaim it, improve your trademark strategy.
Make sure that you obtain your trademark, not just your trade name, if you want to avoid confusion and legal complications.
4) The Name Of Your Agency Describes Its Services
The name of your business should be distinctive and not simply descriptive. If you are a leader in a certain sector, many firms probably have the same name within your industry. This will mean that your brand is less likely to be labelled.
Customized blogs and task support systems, for example, are sometimes identical names identifying the business’s profession. However, since they were explorers in the region, only a portion of those places had a marked name.
The client is also confused by many web domains with equally descriptive names. The USPTO office thus denies its application for trademarks.
Mind, before you even start investing in your brand, to select an original name.
5) You Assume That Your Brand is Already Trademarked If It Includes Your Name
You might think your first or last name is original and it’s your brand’s trademark. You will have to log it with the USPTO office, though. In addition, there are personal names in the catalog of descriptive labels. You are now unlikely to win rights. In addition, with your first or last name, you may not be the only one.
6) You Thought That Your Brand Name Is Available Since It Doesn’t Appear In The USPTO List
Suppose you looked at the name of your brand on the USPTO website and could see nothing like yourself. You might believe your name is ready to be used. But that’s a misunderstanding.
You should not have your name in the archive if you intend to trademark your name. Otherwise, you can’t mark that when someone else has rights to it already.
But the second move is to search for other non-trademarked listed entities. It must not be compared with any other name if you wish to mark the name of your company.
It is not enough to search online. Start to carry out a comprehensive hunt for other brands like your own.
7) You Think That Your Trademark Gives You The Right To Use Your Brand Name
As long as the goods and services belong under the trademark name. You also provide all services and goods of your business as you apply for the trademark of your company. Thus only those are protected by the trade mark.
Speak to a specialised counsel if you don’t want legal troubles. It is not enough to provide a common definition. Your lawyer will provide you with all the offered resources and products.
8) You Believed That Your Name Is Automatically Trademarked Because It’s Unique
That doesn’t mean you already own it, since the name of the organization wasn’t used before. Trade branding is the only way you can get ownership under the name of your company. Your name is not trademarked until you buy an official USPTO registration. This sign allows the name of the agency to be yours alone. It would even provide you with legal support if anyone abuses it.
9) You Didn’t Register The Name Of Your Brand As Trademark
There’s a difference between trademark and trade name.
The name of the enterprise registered on USPTO is a trademark. In any case, when you have paid for it, you own the trademark.
A business name is just a registered name that enables you to legally practice your company in one area. You still don’t possess the trademark, and if you extend your business, you can experience obstacles.
10) You Think That Your Trademark Is Yours Forever
You may think that you register your brand’s name once, and then it’s yours for eternity. However, this is not the case.
After you register your mark, you may want to use it as much as you can within legal limits. Otherwise, you can lose it.
Additionally, you need to update your trademark registration during the following years:
- The fifth and sixth year of activity since the trademark;
- The ninth and tenth year of activity since the trademark;
- Every ten years after the first decade since the trademark.
If you fail to renew your mark, the USPTO could remove your trademark and offer it to someone else.
On the licensed goods and facilities, use the labeling correctly and as often as you can. Track the name of the brand and consult with a lawyer. Finally, every couple of years, extend your rights.