A brand is not a material thing – it’s an idea. However, things that make a brand are not an abstract concept of any kind – they are intellectual property or IP. The topic of how to create your own IP and how to protect it in the era of the internet and a fast expanding market (whose entirety is definitely not covered by IP protection laws). With that in mind and without further ado, here are several tips for creating and protecting your IP in the best way possible.
1. Choosing the most important brand markings
The first step in becoming a brand is to develop your own IP. A lot of people worry about their mission, vision and objectives, early on, yet, these are things that are related to the concept of brand awareness. Before you can reach brand awareness, however, you need to tackle the issue of brand recognition. This involves having corporate colors, product packages, a logo, slogans and a company name. Therefore, your first priority needs to be the development of these relevant IP aspects.
2. Focusing on your online presence
The next thing you need to do is establish your online presence. One reason why it’s important to come up with a company name before this is that you might want to use it as your URL. The first thing you need to do is find a reliable brand design agency, and tell them what kind of impression you want people to get when they visit your website. Other than this, you need to find other ways to establish your online presence and increase the overall awareness of your brand. This includes the creation of a ton of online content in the form of blog posts, podcasts, videos, infographics and other formats. These are mostly subject to copyright, which is something that we’ll discuss briefly.
3. Exploring various IP protection options
The next thing you need to review is your legal mechanisms for protecting your intellectual property, and there are several things that you can do about it. First, you have copyright, which is involved with any creative piece of work. Second, you have trademarks which protect your logo, brand and slogans. Finally, you have a patent which is a legal mechanism that’s meant to protect your invention, regardless of whether it’s a product or an improvement to a business model.
4. A patent is not always the best idea
Before we carry on to methods that you can use if your IP has been infringed upon, we need to discuss the controversial topic of applying for a patent and a major way in which this can backfire. In order to get a patent, you need to describe your product to the last detail, as well as describe the manufacturing process. This means that, in theory, it would be fairly easy for one to copy a product, keeping it just as different so that it stays under the radar. However, people still prefer to buy from the original creator and just because someone tries to copy you it doesn’t mean that they’ll succeed.
5. Taking legal measures
The last thing you need to understand is that you need to be ready to take legal measures if things go south. This is why you need a reliable team of legal experts on your side so that you can start the process. Now, even with all the innovation and regulation in this field, you need to be ready and willing to take all the legal measures in order to make things work. However, keep in mind that this is not always cost-effective and that it might take a while until this issue is resolved this way.
The specifics about your IP are completely subjective, mostly due to the fact that it depends on your preferences, industry, competition (you don’t want to be confused with them or to infringe on something they’re already using). Still, by constantly having the above-listed five things in mind, you shouldn’t have any trouble with the creation or protection of either of these two concepts.