By Nevin Clinton
In today’s digital world, safeguarding and protecting one’s brand becomes extremely critical for companies. Small and medium-sized businesses often tend to ignore this aspect which leads to a plethora of complications. It is essential to understand that an effective brand protection strategy isn’t needed only for large companies with well-established brands, but also to just about every business. Especially during the times of the Covid-19 pandemic where businesses are carried out online more often than not, it becomes all the more crucial to employ brand protection strategies.
What is brand protection?
Brand protection is nothing but the steps that a company or business takes to prevent other parties from making use of its intellectual property which might lead to a loss of revenue as well as reputation. The aim is to make sure that trademarks, copyrights, designs and patents are obtained and the company’s intellectual property is protected from any form of counterfeiting or piracy from a third party.
How to protect intellectual property rights?
Intellectual property rights are of paramount importance to companies and there are various ways to protect them. Wherever required and possible, trademarks, copyrights, designs and patents must be obtained. It is also important to understand when to obtain which form of protection. This is because there are differences between each form and their scopes are limited to either designs or tangible property or inventions.
For example, trademarks protect words, phrases, logos, designs etc which are key to identifying a brand. Copyrights protect tangible intellectual property such as arts, books, songs, photographs etc. Patents are limited to inventions and innovations wherein a new process or product is found. Apart from these, trade secrets are also important to be preserved and wherever needed non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements must be entered into with other parties. So irrespective of which industry a business or company operates in, intellectual property rights protection becomes key in some form or the other, further hammering home the point that an effective brand protection strategy is important.
Example of an effective brand protection strategy
What brand protection strategy a company chooses depends on its nature of work and various other factors. Regardless of the same, a brand protection strategy must ensure that compliance requirements are met. Further, in case there are infringements or a possibility of infringements, recording such information as documentary evidence is necessary in order to take action. It is necessary that companies stay alert at all times and look for parties that might be infringing their intellectual property rights. If they are indeed found to be doing so, legal action must be initiated and there is no room for forgiving or trying to get into an agreement unless it is deemed appropriate to do so.
While the aforesaid steps are a must for just about every company, there are some more steps that are not particularly compulsory, but desirable to help in brand protection. For example, a channel for monitoring potential breaches can be laid out. Getting to the root of the problem is always key and therefore, such channels can be of help. Investing in technology with regard to the same can go a long way in being of help as well. Offline brand protection strategies and steps can be integrated with online actions. Such an action would help simplify the hassle of having to manually search for and respond to actions that require a counteraction. Another important step would be to educate shareholders as well as those associated with the company to help in this process. In this way, it would become easy to detect any threat to the company’s brand.
Brand protection strategies is one of the most important aspects for any business, but unfortunately, it is also one of the most ignored. The benefits and safety that such strategies provide is huge. Also, the ill-effects that counterfeiting or a compromise on one’s intellectual property rights bring are endless and it could result in huge losses as well as a loss of trust and reputation. Therefore, it is high time that each and every company in the country and around the world start incorporating them into their day-to-day activities.