OK, picture this: You are driving down a highway, and your mouth begins to water when you see the sight of those golden arches accessible from the next exit. Some McDonald’s food sounded pretty good right then.
Stomach rumbling, you resist and your eyes go back to the road, and you notice that the vehicle in front of you is a Mercedes Benz. You know it’s a Mercedes because you see the car’s emblem – a circle with a three-pointed star. The owner must be wealthy!
Another car drives by, this one flaunting a bumper sticker of a large crimson or red, gray and white stylized “A.” You may be a huge Auburn fan but you immediately identify the owner of that vehicle as an Alabama Crimson Tide fan. You immediately speed up to pass.
The golden arches, the circle with a three-pointed star, and the stylized “A” are more than just images you picked up while driving down the highway. The arches made you hungry, the three-pointed star evoked expectations of luxury, and the stylized “A” likely took you back to those fun days when Auburn beat Alabama or those other games you would prefer to forget.
That’s what trademarks do: they represent brands – in this case, McDonalds, Mercedes Benz, and University of Alabama – and everything associated with those brands. Trademarks encompass the emotions, the reputations, and the goodwill we consumers attach to our favorite and our not-so-favorite brands.
Countless words, symbols, phrases, designs, and colors have been used in order to establish the identities of thousands of brands for consumers. Even scents, tastes, and sounds are becoming popular to identify trademarks.
Trademarks help us to identify what’s around us. We look to trademarks to signal what it is we’re buying and what to expect when we buy it. Trademarks provide all consumers a trusted, genuine seal of approval.
So, back to my original question of “Who Cares About Trademarks?” If you’re a business owner, you should!
If you are wondering if your brand is eligible for a trademark, I’d be happy to have a conversation with you. Click here to schedule a time to chat.
If you are wondering how you can protect your brand and intellectual property, I’d be happy to provide you with a complimentary consultation. Click here to schedule a time to chat.