Marketing & Trademarks
Trademarks are at the core of brand & marketing efforts, however Marketers & Trademark Lawyers/Agents typically have different views on what makes a good trademark.
A trademark acts a source indicator for goods and/or services and distinguishes that source from others in the marketplace. Trademarks may include, for example, your business and/or brand name, product names, logos and slogans.
Marketing is generally the act of promoting and selling products or services. Trademarks typically play a dominant role in marketing & advertising efforts.
Marketer Perspective vs. Trademark Lawyer/Agent Perspective
A Marketer is focused on getting the message out about products and services, and generally marketers like product/service names that are descriptive (e.g. 'Sweet' for ice cream) as consumers will easily understand the product or service that is being offered.
In contrast, a Trademark Lawyer/Agent likes coined or arbitrary trademarks (e.g. Xerox®, Apple®) as they are stronger trademarks & have a better chance of successful registration with the Canadian Trademarks Office.
Balancing Contrasting Objectives
For the primary brand of a business, it is highly recommended that you create a strong trademark like a coined or arbitrary name as this is the backbone of your brand identity. You want to be able to register your primary brand & other important trademarks with the Canadian Trademarks Office so that you have exclusive rights across Canada for these trademarks. With your primary brand, long-term protection of the trademark is important. Registering your trademark provides you exclusive rights across Canada for 10 years (updated June 2019), and rights are renewable.
However, for short term marketing campaigns, or for products/services that are anticipated to be short lived, then you may consider taking a marketer's approach and select a descriptive name for your product, service or campaign. If the business only plans to use the name on a temporary basis, the name can be less distinctive as you don't need to register the name as a trademark.
However, it is important to note that sometimes products/services or campaigns become more successful than anticipated, and you many find yourself in a situation where you have a weak trademark for a high-demand product or service. A weak trademark is more difficult to protect & enforce against copycats.
Securing your Trademark Assets
Registering your trademark gives you exclusive rights in the trademark across Canada for 10 years (updated June 2019).
Contact Sander Law today to protect & register your important trademarks!
The above content is for informational purposes only and is not legal or professional advice.