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Brand Development and Trademarks

The Value of Intellectual Property when Launching Your Business

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When establishing a new company, there are several steps you should take as part of the process. One of the most important pieces of building your business is creating a brand that connects with your customers. This requires considerable time, planning, and resources, so it’s important to know that what you build can be protected. At PixelPeople, we are not legal experts, or experts in intellectual property (IP); however, we’ve built businesses from the ground up and know the value of protecting what you create. Below are a few thoughts to get you started when considering your intellectual property.


Before you Build a Brand that Customers Love…

Your logo, your website, your marketing materials, and even the way you conduct business are essential brand assets. But the real value is how those assets represent your brand to others. So, before you get started on the brand development process, pay attention to the IP implications. Do your research to see how your competitors position themselves. How will you be different, and what is your competitive advantage? Consider other IP that already exists (company names, trademarks, patents, etc.). Even if you think existing IP does not relate to your business, it’s a good idea to be sure. Visit the USPTO website to get started and consult a professional for guidance.


Develop Intellectual Property to Stand Out

Once you confirm it’s likely that you can protect your desired IP, work with professionals to craft a brand that’s uniquely you. Ensure your business name, logo, and website will not be confused by the consumer as another business. Keep in mind that branding goes far beyond logo design. It’s establishing an image that reflects your company culture, including its character and voice. It’s making sure that all your communications have a consistent look and tone (written or otherwise) across media. Consistent presentation and actions by your business help build trust and ongoing loyalty. But while there are many components to branding, don’t feel like you need to do everything at once. You might choose to start by developing a certain subset, such as a strong website & social media presence. Regardless of direction, create original work to position yourself in the marketplace.


Protect Your Invaluable Assets

Developing a brand requires significant time & resources, so you’ll want to avoid costly mistakes. Once you have an officially registered trademark, convey it to others by using the registered “R” symbol on all communications. Include a copyright notice with the copy on your website and in your marketing materials. Other IP, such as patents, may need to be communicated differently to the marketplace. Regardless of the application, these notices signal that you are the official owner of your registered IP.


Intellectual property is complex, and it takes commitment & professional guidance to get it right. You can begin by researching the USPTO’s website to understand what’s required & how you can protect yourself. Be original, create a business that’s unique to you, and then ensure that you benefit from your hard work. It will take extra time up front but will be worth it when you establish a unique and meaningful brand.

*Disclaimer: PixelPeople does not specialize in intellectual property law. Please ensure you consult a professional for your intellectual property needs. If you need a referral, get in touch!

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