Do Startups Need a Trademark Attorney?

trademark attorney meeting with a prospective client to discuss trademark options

As an entrepreneur, you put blood, sweat, and tears into your startup, not to mention your savings and investments of others. Strong branding is one of the things which will help your startup succeed in the first few years. As you put together your branding strategy, you have likely created a symbol or design for your logo and/or some type of slogan, catchphrase, or word to set yourself apart from your competition.

It’s crucial for you to trademark your creative marketing tools to prevent others from using them. Keep reading to learn exactly which items you could/should trademark, how to go about the application process, and why you should have a trademark attorney during the process. 

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How to Protect Business Ideas?

In the age of instant communication, it’s not easy to protect business ideas. Depending on what kind of information is accessible to others, there are several options available to protect business ideas from being stolen or copied by third parties. If you want to ensure that your business partners or employees do not misappropriate or share important business ideas or information with others, your best bet may be to create an employment agreement/independent contractor agreement and/or a non-disclosure or non-compete agreement that includes certain confidentiality obligations and restrictive covenants in them.

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What is Brand Genericide

Nintendo Genericide picture

Your brand is valuable. Protecting your brand with a registered trademark is important to maximize your brand awareness and protecting consumers from inferior impostors. However, if you fail to enforce your trademark rights when they are violated, you risk losing your brand name to genericide. Protecting your brand from the beginning is essential.

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What Are Your Trademark Rights?

trademark written in a brand strategy book

A trademark is a symbol, design, word, or phrase that distinguishes one business’s products from another. A service mark is a symbol, design, word, or phrase that distinguishes one business’s services from another. The term “trademark” is commonly used to refer to both trademarks and service marks in the United States. Trademarks have common-law rights, but a business may also choose to federally register its trademark for enhanced protection.

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