Many businesses are unaware of the most important registration for their business – a trademark for safeguarding the brand. Trademark registration is one of the most valuable registration for any business which can obtained both easily and cheaply. However, trademark registration is one of the most overlooked owing to lack of awareness. The awareness about intellectual property has steadily risen over the years in India with increasing number of trademark infringement litigations. Therefore, it is essential for both startups and established businesses to have trademark registration for their brands to avoid costly and length litigations in the future.
What can be trademarked?
When a brand is trademarked, the owner of the trademark can control use of brand. If a brand is not trademarked, competitors can use or misuse the brand, which will invariably affect the brand, customer loyalty and recognition. The following are elements of a brand that can be trademarked:
- Business logo
- Business name
- Business tag line
- Packaging used for your business, if any
There are certain criteria’s which make a brand trademarkable.Chief among them are uniqueness and resemblance with an existing trademark registrations. For instance, a phrase that’s commonly used cannot be trademarked but a unique name can be. For example sandwiches cannot be trademarked, but a brand like BesstasteSandwiches can be. Invented words are the most easy to trademark as they could be unique and not resembling any existing trademarks.
Trademark as an asset
Like real estate, trademarks appreciate as a business becomes more valuable. An established brand name and trademark can even result in bigger corporations acquiring your business. Thus, trademarks are an asset whichcan be bought, sold, franchised or leased. Well established trademarks can even be used as collateral to avail a business loan.
Easy to Obtain Trademark
Filing a trademark application is easy and does not cost mucheither. Trademark applications can be easily filed online and most online trademark filing services just charge around Rs.6000 per trademark filing, making it very affordable. Once registered, the trademark registration will be valid for ten years. At the end of ten years, the trademark registration can be easily renewed for another ten years again.