Separating your small business from its competitors is crucial, especially in the current economy. Learning how to successfully brand your business will help you achieve this goal. However, with so many new forms of social media, creating a strategy can be difficult. Consider the following questions and answers to learn branding tips that will help you navigate the sea of online communication and effectively develop a branding strategy.
After you start your corporation or LLC, what comes next? Building a reputation in your market or industry can be challenging and frequently requires time to gain the trust of consumers. Registering a trademark can help you on your way to becoming an established and reputable company by giving you a jumpstart in name recognition. Continue reading
Forming a corporation or LLC is one step in the development and protection of a brand. Protecting your company name with the Secretary of State in which your corporation or LLC is formed does not necessarily mean that your trademark or brand name is avaiable on a nation-wide basis.
If you’re building a brand, which may go beyond the formation of a corporation or LLC, then considering a trademark search is a good way to go. A good example is our own company. Our corproate name is “My Corporation Business Services, Inc.”, but our brand name is “MyCorporation.com.” We do business under our brand name, it’s simpler, it’s more catchy, and it’s more well known. For that reason, we made sure the name was available on a nationwide level – that it can be used without conflicting with another company.
To evaluate whether there are other companies using your brand, a trademark search is the way to go. It’s a great first step in the process because it’s better to make sure the brand name is available before you invest in the brand only to discover it’s already in use.
A brand can be a company’s biggest asset – look at Amazon, Nike, McDonands. It’s often not the products, but the brand names with which we are familiar. Familiarity often results in customer loyalty, and it all starts with the brand.
In the Internet’s infancy, domain names served merely as a means of locating specific computers on the Internet. Now, with globalization and commercialization of the Internet, domain names have taken on business identification and trademark significance. Domain names are now highly visible in the bricks and mortar world, appearing in television, radio, and magazine advertisements, on billboards, and in most company’s advertising materials. Now that domain names serve a unique advertising and business purpose, confusion may arise when a company’s domain names are not the same as their trademarks, and vice versa. Domain names are distinct from trademarks because domain names are global and unique (a particular string of letters can link to only one site). On the other hand trademarks may overlap in different industries or different geographical locations. In the business world, because Internet users often assume a company’s trademark is its domain name, a domain name may become an equally valuable piece of intellectual property, and, like a trademark, a true business asset. Ultimately, one of the most important means of identifying the goods or services sold by your company will be through its trademarks and corresponding domain name. In fact, your trademark may be the only means for customers to identify your goods or services, and if your trademark is not the same as your domain name, a customer may become confused when searching on the Internet. Unavailability of a matching domain name could prove devastating to your business. Furthermore, choosing a trademark that is unusable because it conflicts with a prior user of a confusingly similar mark may result in a significant loss of valuable time and money, wasted marketing dollars and goodwill. For these reasons, when considering a trademark and domain name, it is important to take into consideration the following: Initially, it is important to undertake a comprehensive search of the trademarks. Continue reading