5 Trademark Mistakes to avoid in the Clothing Business
Protecting your intellectual property and financial interests is crucial for the viability and success of your clothing business. One of the first mistakes many clothing entrepreneurs and designers fall into is relying on copyright law since their original work is automatically protected under this designation. While copyright law can protect your original work, it will not save your brand name, logo art, or other brand identity elements.
Here are five common trademark mistakes that you must avoid (consider the first one a bonus).
Filing at the Wrong Time
You are understandably anxious to get going with your business. You know you want to trademark your brand, so you rush out and file as soon as you think of a name. Bad idea.
Being clear on your brand’s identity and having a concise message to promote that identity are only two critical concepts that must be solidified before you file. Otherwise, you are likely to miss the mark and have your registration denied. Or, you suddenly realize that your original concept will not work!
Now, you must abandon your premature filing and begin all over, costing you time and money you probably can’t spare.
Also, the typical clothing trademark requires you to use your brand in interstate commerce before filing, with a few specific exceptions. Make sure you comply with all the prerequisites for filing a trademark registration.
Filing without an Attorney
Although it can be tempting to save some money by filing on your own, pursuing trademark registration without an intellectual property attorney is usually the quickest way to fail.
While the initial filing may seem easy enough to some, it is merely the first and easiest step in a long and often confusing process. Suppose you have no attorney of record on your filing. In that case, you are much more likely to receive Office Actions that will force you to hire an attorney to respond, likely costing thousands of dollars.
Trademark Attorneys understand the many nuances and critical details that lead to successful registration. Their expertise can be priceless.
No Comprehensive Trademark Search
Your brand name, logo, and related elements must be distinctly original for your trademark registration’s approval. Your quest will not be successful if what you propose might be considered confusing because of similarities with other registered trademarks. Without a comprehensive, professional search of all the appropriate databases, you risk a quick denial.
Again, this is something that a reasonable attorney will prioritize before attempting to file your application and a key component in your Trademark Factory® package.
Assuming Your Trademark Protects You Globally
Nope, your US trademark registration at the U PTO does not offer international protection. If you intend to sell your products in other countries, you will need to file registrations in those specific regions. This may seem a distant possibility right now, but the world is smaller today than ever, and the Internet knows no bounds. It is a best practice to always be prepared for unexpected opportunities and the future.
Premature Ornamental Trademark Use
Once you establish your trademark concept, it might be tempting to embellish some garments with your new art and share it with the world. Unless you already have your trademark registered, this is not a good idea. Don’t get ahead of yourself. People need to associate your trademark with your brand and its identity. You’re only hampering your branding efforts if you release your trademark visual before establishing its meaning in the marketplace.
After registration, it is safe to decorate your items with your trademark logo. You also want to incorporate that trademark into price tags and clothing labels. Your trademark is the face of your brand and its identity, after all. Use it liberally.
You invest significant blood, sweat, and tears, to build the business and brand you dream of. You know how hard you work to reach your goals and all the ups and downs that your dream signifies. Your focused experience makes you the expert in your business and guides you every day.
We understand this at Trademark Factory® because we feel the same passion for our mission. This passion is why we offer such an amazing proposition and guarantee. For a flat fee, our experienced, professional trademark attorneys and our professional staff will shepherd your filing to success – guaranteed.
First, we take care of that comprehensive search. If we discover that your filing cannot be approved, we will refund every penny. When we file your application, we will take care of every Office Action or any other required response. Ultimately, we will again refund all your money if your application is denied. And finally, if you find another service online that offers the same value and guarantees, we will process your registration free of charge.
So, if you’re serious about trademarking your brand, contact Trademark Factory® today. Learn how we can help you achieve your goals, and then relax, knowing that you are in capable hands and you are guaranteed results.