Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Brand Protection: The Importance of Trademarks

Small business owners tend to reinvest (or at least should reinvest) a good portion of their profits back into their business to help it grow.  A large portion of that investment usually goes to advertising. Most small business owners understand that advertising and building their brand is one of the most important things you can do for your business, but many don’t realize that a brand name can be one of your business’s most important assets. It’s not a coincidence that companies like Nike and Procter & Gamble spend literally millions of dollars per year protecting their trademarks. One thing small business owners can do is to file for federal trademark protection with the US Patent & Trademark Office. The cost is relatively low when compared with the protection that is afforded ($275-$325 filing fee plus attorney’s fees).  Filing a US trademark not only prevents your competitors from using a confusingly similar name nationwide, but it also ensures that you are entitled to be using your name. With today’s global online marketplace, there are millions of businesses operating and it is important to make sure that your brand is unique and available before spending money to build and promote that brand. A good brand can be worth a lot of money. Isn’t it a good idea to take proactive steps to protect one of your business’ most important assets?
Have questions or comments? Email Attorney Regina von Gootkin at rvongootkin@bpslawyers.com.