SEARCH YOUR TRADE MARK…and not just on Google!
This is something you should be doing while you are in brainstorming/brand creation mode (above). Google is a good start, as are the social media platforms, as most businesses these days will at least have a Facebook page or Instagram account. Try some hashtag and domain searching as well! If you find that there are businesses out there using the brand you have chosen for the sale of goods or services, you may be best to save yourself any drama and choose another – but double check with us first, as there can be strategic ways to allow you to use the brand, particularly if your goods/service offering is completely different.
Although your online searching can be quite extensive, you cannot be 100% confident unless you have conducted a trade mark search via the Trade Mark Offices of each country you intend to hit. This is best to be provided by an experienced Trade Mark Attorney (aka yours truly). We will give you the final word on the availability of the brand and what the best strategy for you to achieve trade mark registration.
Adequate searching is an essential part of your start up process. If you skip the searching, you may find yourself in some serious legal hot water later on…and there is nothing worse than having to re-brand and educate your customers of the change…not to mention the costs involved and the diminished credibility on your business reputation.