"Regard your good name as the richest jewel you can possibly be possessed of ... The way to gain a good reputation is to endeavour to be what you desire to appear"
- Socrates (469 BC - 399 BC) founding father of western philosophy (and branding advisor).
As you know, brands and logos can be very valuable. After all, the brand name by which you ask, or search, for a product often means a sale for the company that owns that name.
In order for you to grow your client base through word of mouth, customers and potential customers must be able to give the name of your business or product to other potential customers. What's more, the potential customers need to be able to remember your name and not confuse it with that of other traders.
If a potential customer does confuse your name with another trader's then you are likely to miss out on a sale.
So you see, the goodwill that a business enjoys is intimately connected to the reputation that it has and the penetration of its name through the potential client base. It's also extremely important that the business actually owns the trading name, and that's where trade mark registration comes in.
You're probably aware that in most jurisdications there are many naming regimes. By that I mean such things as, business name registration, company name registration, and domain name registration.
What you mightn't realise though is that none of those actually give you a right to stop other traders from using your trading name in respect of the goods and services that you trade in. Also, your registration of a business name with the Department of Fair Trading doesn't equate to a guarantee that you won't infringe someone else's rights if you use your business name.
Under the Trade Marks Act, only the owner of a registered trade mark has the right to use the mark, in respect of the products for which it is registered, or authorise other persons to do so.
As a registered trade mark attorney I can help you in all aspects of trade mark work including:
- Preparation of trade mark applications and assistance in securing trade mark registration in Australia, New Zealand and internationally.
- Infringement and registrability searches and advice.
- Advice in relation to Passing Off and Misleading and Deceptive Conduct.
- Oppositions to registration of trade marks.
- Removal of conflicting trade marks from the register for non-use.
- Assignment and licensing of trade marks.
- Advice in relation to the correct use and maintenance of trade marks.
If you have a trade mark related problem then call or email me and I'll do my best to answer your questions.