Pick a great trademark. Register it.
Sounds easy but people get it wrong all the time. Today, we’ll focus on mistakes people make when they pick a trademark. The next post will focus on mistakes people make when they try to register their trademark.
I’m picking a trademark so that everyone will know what we sell right away.
There are so many problems with this:
- At best your trademark will be incredibly weak and virtually indefensible. At worst, it won’t have any rights at all. Like FLAT FIX.
- Everyone will confuse you with everyone else. Which of these is the most memorable: Staples® OfficeMax® or Office Depot®?
- You’ll be locking yourself into whatever you describe so that your brand can’t grow and change as your business does.
I’m naming it after myself.
Trademarks that are proper names are weak, both legally and from a marketing perspective. They also involve risks that other trademarks don’t have:
- Just because it’s your name doesn’t mean you’ll be allowed to use it.
- Unless you become really famous, other people will be able to use your name if it’s also their name.
- People don’t always live up to their reputations.
If those ideas are bad, what should you do?
Pick a trademark that tells your customers how they’ll feel or what they’ll experience when they use your product or service: Nest®; Sir Kensington’s®; Roomba®. A suggestive trademark is easy to defend and a marketer’s dream. Go suggestive. You’ll never regret it.
Big shout out to the members of Pilotworks in Brooklyn, for suggesting this topic! What do you want to know about?