Your brand started as a simple idea. Over time you have promoted this brand via marketing, word of mouth and outstanding customer service. Your brand is now an emotional response. It is the feeling your customers and potential customers get when they see your name, your logo, your store layout, your packaging, your tagline or anything else that uniquely identifies you. These items have value and are likely your most important asset; don’t let others profit off of you these rights.
At Initiating Protection, we specialize in identifying the unique elements that identify your company. These items are brands to you, but they are legally recognized as trademarks, trade dress or copyrighted works. All of these items are capable of legal protection, and often capable of enhanced legal protection.
Adopting a new brand is full of risk. Like due diligence in a business transaction, a trademark clearance helps you understand the risk associated with adopting a proposed brand. We can also prepare strategies that reduce the risk that your new brand will infringe the rights of a third party, or that enhance your rights in your brand to the fullest extent.
Gaining registered rights in a trademark is one of the most important steps a brand owner can achieve. There are many services that allow companies to file their own applications to achieve registration, but this is not a task for the uninformed. While self-help is tempting in this area, filling out the forms incorrectly can reduce your rights in your brand, or worse. Similarly, responding incorrectly to refusals raised by the US Patent and Trademark Office can preclude you from realizing your trademark rights.
Initiating Protection specializes in preparing strategies for gaining registered rights, and we have the systems to accurately monitor your application every step of the way. We also have the knowledge and connections to help you gain registrations in foreign jurisdictions.
Licensing is important. Of course having a license could lead to additional revenues in the form of royalties paid by third parties, but did you know that not having a license could lead to a brand owner losing its rights in its brand? Initiating Protection’s experience includes determining the correct strategy to utilize in a licensing program, including negotiation with unrelated parties and preparing bespoke structures for intercompany licensing systems.
Brand owners often use copyrighted materials such as images for logos, text in marketing materials or music in their stores. There are various risks in all of these actions, including the risk that you are infringing the copyright of a third party. Initiating Protection can help you clear these items to reduce the risk of infringement.
Logos are frequently eligible for trademark protection, but many people forget to consider copyright protection too. Sometimes this can be crucial in protecting your brand, especially in cases of online infringement. Initiating Protection has developed a comprehensive approach to brand enforcement, including gaining copyright registrations for applicable brand items.
After years of business a company may have many brands. While many of these brands were carefully thought out and developed, others appeared on their own inertia. Initiating Protection helps owners identify all of their brands (and other IP) so that they can have a complete inventory of all of these intangible assets. Further, we help develop strategies to effectively protect, enforce and monetize these assets.
While many of us prefer face-to-face connections, we must accept that the world is often virtual, augmented and simulated. Accordingly, many issues confronting brand owners happen online, including in social media platforms. Initiating Protection understands the ins and outs of this ever-changing landscape, and can help brand owners who find themselves facing issues in this nebulous arena.
There are many intellectual property concerns related to domain names. Initiating Protection helps brand owners understand what actions are and are not permitted, and also can assist in bringing actions against third parties to transfer domain names which are used in an abusive manner.
Buying and selling a business often involves the transfer of intellectual property. Failure to fully capture and account for transfer or retention of all the intellectual property can lead to unintended outcomes which may result in headaches or worse. Initiating Protection can partner with transaction counsel to act as a subject matter expert in this niche area.