Your brand is your most important asset. It is what drives business to your door. As the pandemic runs its course, it is good time to review your trademarks: those logos, words, and phrases that distinguish and set you apart from your competitors.
Any logo or phrase that you use to identify your goods and services, including your company name, may serve as a trademark. The question to ask yourself: Does this logo create, in a customer’s mind, a positive association with my business? Think Golden Arches or Coke®.
Trademarks should be registered at the federal level. Federal registration provides extra protection, not the least of which is preventing others from registering a confusingly similar trademark.
Now is a good time to do the following:
- Review your business and your brand. Inventory those words, phrases, and images that distinguish you, set you apart from the competition, and drive business to you.
- Consider whether to register any unregistered trademarks, or to expand the registration of an existing one. If you offer a different product or service under the same name as a registered trademark, it might not be protected.
- Search the internet for competing users, and evaluate whether any legal defense is warranted. A local restaurant with an established brand is likely not threatened by as similarly branded restaurant in a faraway state. If, on the other hand, your reach is nationwide, you may need to take action.