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An Insider's Guide to Protecting Your Trademark with the USPTO

Your trademark is your business’s most valuable asset. Major companies have, for years, recognized the necessity of protecting their brands, their trademarks if you will, so that they can build consumer recognition therein. It is an invaluable part of building your business. Without your trademark consumers would not know how to get your product. Without your trademark, you have nothing to build consumer recognition in your goods or services.

by The Trademark Company

updated 01/02/2024 | 4 Min Read 

So how do you properly protect your most valuable business asset. Here are four insider steps that every business should know.

Insider Tip 1: Check Availability First

Prior to using a trademark, make sure that the trademark, or a similar trademark, is not already in use by another company. If you don’t you risk having your trademark refused registration and/or adopting a trademark that you may be required to stop using if you are ever sued for trademark infringement. 

As such, always make sure that the trademark you want is available before you begin use of it by having a Trademark Research Report conducted.

Insider Tip 2: Register Your Trademark

Once you know that your trademark is available register it with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Registration is relatively cost-effective and provides the owner with extra benefits should enforcement of the trademark ever be required. Moreover, having your trademark on the U.S. federal register is a great deterrent against infringement of your brand.

Insider Tip 3: Monitor for Infringement

Once you have adopted your trademark and your customers begin using it to identify your products or services, make sure to Monitor Your Trademark for Infringement

Competitors often adopt similar trademarks to yours to divert your customers to their products. Monitoring is easy and affordable and alerts you to when this occurs so that you may take immediate action to stop it and keep your brand strong.

Insider Tip 4: Enforce Your Trademark

Lastly, a trademark must enforce its trademark when infringement is spotted. Allowing others to use an identical or highly similar trademark to yours diminishes your trademark’s ability to identify your goods and services and may create consumer confusion. In short, it will cost you business (aka $$$).

As such, if spotted, make sure to Enforce Your Trademark before the infringement damages your trademark and, by extension, your business.