Understanding Trademarks

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February 13, 2017
Author: NCH

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Millions of companies large and small use trademarks or service marks to protect their name and brand. A trademark is a symbol, word, or words legally registered or established by use as representing a company or product. Trademarks protect businesses from competitors stealing their identity or using a name or symbol so similar that it could cause confusion for clients or customers. By identifying a product or service with a trademark or service mark, consumers are better protected from the deception of copycat competitors.
Trademarks are also important because they help consumers find and identify your company. The marketplace is crowded and it’s hard for consumers to distinguish your business from your competitors. However, customers viewing a trademark immediately know who they are dealing with, and likely know the reputation of your business, making them less likely to look for alternatives.
If you want to protect your brand with a trademark, do your due diligence before investing a lot of time and money in launching a new brand. Obtain a clearance search to make sure your new brand is available and doesn’t infringe on anyone’s prior rights. When you’re certain about your brand, file for the trademark or service mark to protect your business.

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