When an organization officially registers a trademark, that image, or logo or other marketing resource serves as a stand-in for the company’s brand. The formal trademark registration process is lengthy and involves thorough evaluation to ensure that two brands don’t have trademarks so similar that they could confuse consumers.
Trademarks are useful for a variety of reasons, including the establishment and maintenance of a consistent brand that consumers recognize. Effective branding and careful marketing efforts can help a company dominate an industry. Unfortunately, the more successful an organization becomes, the more likely it is to eventually face some kind of intellectual property infringement.
Brand copycats will often engage in trademark infringement in their efforts to dupe consumers. Companies targeted by unethical businesses and experiencing trademark infringement often fight back because of the two serious consequences such infringement can create.
1. A loss of sales
Every time a consumer goes to the store and chooses a knock-off product instead of the brand they want to purchase, those products infringing on a company’s trademark and confusing consumers steal a potential sale from the organization that has attempted to trademark its logo, packaging, etc. Not only will individual consumers potentially turn to knock-off products, but businesses might purchase directly from competitors selling products labeled to look like the offerings from another company.
2. A stain on a company’s reputation
The more an infringing product looks like the official product, the harder it will be for consumers to tell the difference. In some cases, people call to file complaints or leave negative reviews of products online without ever realizing that they didn’t buy a product from the actual brand. Cut-rate knockoff products can lead to people questioning whether the authentic product has any value and could harm a company’s future prospects in addition to its current reputation.
Companies that fight back against copyright infringement help protect their brand and can also potentially secure compensation for the impact of the misconduct of and unscrupulous competitor. The first step is often identifying the offending party and notifying them of the infringement in writing. After that, a lawsuit could very well follow.
Taking action when trademark infringement affects a company can protect the business’s sustainability and its bottom line.