Why (or why not) someone should trademark a business name?
To help you decide whether or not to trademark your business name, we asked successful business owners and entrepreneurs this question for their best insights. From preventing confusion in the marketplace to being time-consuming with high costs and complications, there are several opinions that may help inform your decision about trademarking your business name.
Here are 10 considerations for trademarking a business name:
- Prevent Confusion in The Marketplace
- Sell With Amazon on Their Brand Registry
- Be Protected by The ACPA
- Secure Your Business for Growth
- Assure Consumers of Your Authenticity
- Less Priority if You Are Still Figuring Out Your Brand
- You May Have To Choose Patent Over Trademark
- Trademarks Are Assets
- Protect and Showcase Professional Branding
- Can be Time-consuming With High Costs and Complications
Prevent Confusion in The Marketplace
Trademarking your business name is important for a variety of reasons, but preventing confusion in the marketplace is one big one. You could find that a completely different kind of business has the same name, diluting the association of your business name with your kinds of products. Don’t let that happen. Trademark your business name to prevent confusion in the marketplace, ASAP.
Nick Santora, Curricula
Sell With Amazon on Their Brand Registry
We have our brand and logo trademarked. The main reason I did this is to sell on Amazon with a brand registry. This protects from other sellers selling on your product listing. You need to have your product trademarked for Amazon to allow you to become a member of the brand registry. After your company has passed Amazon’s brand registry you have the extra benefit of adding Amazon A+ content to your listing. You can add extra images and make your listing more of a web page than Amazon’s standard listing.
Evan McCarthy, SportingSmiles
Be Protected by The ACPA
Under the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA), you won’t have to worry about “cybersquatters”, or internet trolls, stealing your domain name. This act was created for trademarked names, protecting legally-recognized businesses from digital extortion from ill-intentioned individuals. What these individuals do is create websites using other peoples’ business names, refusing to give them up unless paid a high price. However, under this act you have the rights to your business name, earning you the rights to the website domain without having to buy it out from an extortionist.
David Aylor, David Aylor Law Offices
Secure Your Business for Growth
How do you envision your business 5, 10, or 20 years in the future? If you are serious about your business and your goal is to grow it into something special rather than to treat it as a hobby or a sidegig, you should trademark your business name as soon as possible. The last thing you want is to put your time, money, energy, and your heart and soul into your new business only to discover that another company or competitor, who may be unaware of your existence, just applied for and got a trademark with your company name. The only possibility you will get your name back would require you to prove in federal court that you existed prior to your competitor, and it would be very expensive with only a small chance of winning.
Alan Himmel, Florida Allstar Public Adjusting, Inc.
Assure Consumers of Your Authenticity
The one reason you should trademark your business name is to legally secure you the sole right to maximize the value of your own business name. A registered business name is merely protected from being used by another business within the state it’s registered in, but not in another state.
A trademarked business name, however, turns it into a property that grants you inherent property rights of the trademark. This will make it unlawful for another business to use your trademark in whatever way and wherever in the country. Albeit applying for a trademark is much more complicated than registering a name, businesses must think of it as an investment in helping their customers be free of doubts about the authenticity of any goods or service with your business name.
Collen Clark, Schmidt & Clark, LLP
Less Priority if You Are Still Figuring Out Your Brand
The only case in which I would not recommend trademarking your business is if you are not yet ready to make it official. If you don’t have the plan or the money to take it to the next step, it is better to wait until you have it all figured out. Going through the process to trademark your business can be expensive, and requires a lot of paperwork for which you probably don’t qualify yet. It is not a priority if you are still figuring out your start-up.
Once you have trademarked your business you are tied to the name and a certain market. So again, even if trademarking your business is essential once you want to grow and become an official brand, I recommend people wait until everything is decided.
John Cheng, Baotris
You May Have To Choose Patent Over Trademark
If your business is based around a unique service, proprietary product, or new technology, then skip the trademark and prioritize a patent. Securing the unique functions of your products against copycats is essential to companies that thrive on the cutting edge. Trademarks are best used to protect software programming, art, music, and slogans that you don’t want to lose to a competitor. The trouble with trademarks is finding a name that is unique and uncommon — too similar to another Trademark and you’ll get a cease and desist, too common and your trademark will be rejected.
Soumya Mohan, Poised
Trademarks Are Assets
Trademarks appreciate. Over time as your brand grows, the value of your trademark grows as well. Since trademarks are an asset, they can be bought, sold and even used to secure a loan. Bigger corporations down the road may even wish to acquire your business if you desire to sell it to them. In short, trademarks can be valuable.
Erin Banta, Pepper
Protect and Showcase Your Professional Branding
Trademarks are a great way to protect and showcase your professional branding. Some businesses may opt to incorporate their brand name or logo in their advertising and editorial photos for various publications, billboards and other ad campaigns on or offline. Using a protected brand and logo are best for professional branding with traditional and nontraditional marketing methods. The more recognizable your brand name and logo, the more likely you are to benefit from the protections that trademarking provides.
Robert Lowdon, Robert Lowdon Photography
Can be Time-consuming With High Costs and Complications
There are many reasons why someone might want to trademark a business name. A trademark can protect a business name from being used by another business, it can help customers identify the products or services of a particular business, and it can give a business an exclusive right to use the name. If you’re thinking of trademarking a business name, it’s important to consult with a trademark attorney to make sure that the name is eligible for protection.
One reason why someone shouldn’t trademark a business name is that it can be time-consuming. The process of trademarking a business name can be long and complicated, so it’s important to make sure that you are fully prepared before beginning the process. Additionally, trademarks can be expensive to register and maintain, so it’s important to be sure that you are committed to using the trademark before beginning the process.
Syed Ali Abbas, Seo Perks