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Jerri G

Trademark your Business

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I saw the new topic started on the VA that got plagiarized and it got me thinking on how to protect my VA business name.

 

To trademark or not to trademark.

 

Is it a good idea to trademark your business name? How does one go about trademarking their business name? Is there anything else a VA should trademark in her business? Any suggestions, information etc. is very much appreciated.

 

Thank you

 

 

 

Jerri Goranson

Virtual Office Visions

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Trademarking is very expensive and I don't see the need for it. Just my opinion however after going through an expensive process to trademark our network which ended up falling through anyhow.

 

Tawnya,

 

Did you try to trademark in Canada or the United States? Maybe its my naivete, but I didn't think it was super expensive in the US based on my research with the USPTO office and instructions. Again - that may just be a beginner's blunder, though.

 

Kristi Q.

possible future VA

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I think it probably does make some difference as to where you live. I have chosen to trademark my name, logo and catch phrase. I've had people here in Australi try to use the name and catch phrase because the term 'claytons' means something a lot of people understand here. Having the trademark has been useful and has helped me protect my business name.

 

I have one client here in Australia who just didn't follow through with all the trademark information I got for her and end result was someone else decided to trademark the name, even though she'd been using it for 11 years. It has damaged her business and she needed to really build a new brand. One of my VA team members experienced a similar challenge and she had to go through the expense of rebranding and setting up a new business name, logo, stationery and website.

 

You probably need to look at all the pros and cons and where you want to take your business and you probably need to engage the services of someone qualified to advise you, for your location and business needs.

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I think it probably does make some difference as to where you live. I have chosen to trademark my name, logo and catch phrase. I've had people here in Australi try to use the name and catch phrase because the term 'claytons' means something a lot of people understand here. Having the trademark has been useful and has helped me protect my business name.

 

I have one client here in Australia who just didn't follow through with all the trademark information I got for her and end result was someone else decided to trademark the name, even though she'd been using it for 11 years. It has damaged her business and she needed to really build a new brand. One of my VA team members experienced a similar challenge and she had to go through the expense of rebranding and setting up a new business name, logo, stationery and website.

 

You probably need to look at all the pros and cons and where you want to take your business and you probably need to engage the services of someone qualified to advise you, for your location and business needs.

 

So,does that mean if you don't trademark your business name, anyone can use it at any time? Is registering it not enough? :unsure:

 

Thanks, Patty

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Jerri

 

I must be too tired to locate the article that you are talking about. Where is it listed?

 

Thanks,

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I've watched VA business evolve here and it would seem you have more profitable things to do with your time and money than chase a trademark. Kathy has some very specific terms that few of us have. Many change their business name (I have) and services in ways that would leave trademarks dangling.

 

I know there are some who have big issues with plagiarism. There are only about so many ways you can right about virtual assistance, so many of us are going to come off sounding alike. Personally, I don't chase that either.

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I trademarked our network here in United States. It cost me a couple of thousand and then had it lifted anyhow by another party who didn't want me to have it.

 

If I had to do it over again, I wouldn't.

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I think the circumstances can really dictate what needs to be done. In my case it was necessary and still is. I chose to use a phrase from an advert in the 1980s that has today become an accepted phrase for describing something here in Australia. I needed to protect my business and others using the name and phrase I have trademarked. People were assuming other businesses were part of mine - which they weren't.

 

But I appreciate that it doesn't always work that way for others.

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I think the circumstances can really dictate what needs to be done. In my case it was necessary and still is. I chose to use a phrase from an advert in the 1980s that has today become an accepted phrase for describing something here in Australia. I needed to protect my business and others using the name and phrase I have trademarked. People were assuming other businesses were part of mine - which they weren't.

 

But I appreciate that it doesn't always work that way for others.

 

Exactly Kathie! You'll have to decide if it is right for you or not. Talking to a trademark lawyer can help you make that final decision too.

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That was going to be my next point. At any time, speaking to the professionals is the best course of action. We can only speak about personal experiences.

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