When it comes to selecting a trademark, it is important to select great trademark which conveys to the general public that certain products and services are yours or from your company, and not your competitors’.
Businesses usually choose names that describe their product or services and at times, include descriptive or generic terms. Doing this could lead to confusing the consumers, business loss and even loss of trademark. Before selecting your trademark, you must consider the following categories of trademarks based on strength and uniqueness:
Fanciful trademarks are imaginary words that are only used as a trademark. Fanciful trademarks are always the strongest marks and are afforded the strongest protection to businesses. Examples of some popular fanciful trademarks are GOOGLE, YAHOO, REEBOK and etc.
Arbitrary trademarks are actual words used in trademark products or services, but they have no link or relationship with such products or services. The word is randomly paired with a certain product or service, but they are afforded a strong protection for a business. An example of arbitrary trademarks is APPLE computers.
Suggestive trademarks only suggest a characteristic or feature of the product or service, and they require imagination, thought and perception in order to conclude about the product or services that the marks apply. Depending on the uniqueness of suggestive marks, they can be a strong or very strong protection for businesses. An example of suggestive trademarks is Jaguar because the mark suggests to consumers that the automobile is for speed and strong performance.
Descriptive trademarks describe a feature, characteristic, purpose, quality or ingredient of a particular product or service. They cannot be protected except they have been in use for a long time, or spend a lot of money to do a serious marketing campaign together with the descriptive trademark. An example of a descriptive trademark is “FlatRate Moving.”
Generic terms are used to a product or service and cannot be used or accepted as trademarks. It is also possible for a valid or registered trademark to become generic if the consumers misuse the trademark to the extent that it becomes the generic name of a product or service. For instance, ASPIRIN was formerly a trademark before it later became the generic name for diacetylmorphine products.
Fanciful, Arbitrary and Suggestive Trademarks are registrable and protectable trademarks. Descriptive trademarks cannot be registered or protected except they have been in use for a long time. Generic terms cannot be registered as a trademark and protected.
After you have come up with a good potential trademark, the next thing to do is conduct in‐depth searches to confirm if other parties have not registered and/or used the trademark. Ensure the searches are focused on your local country and other countries you plan to sell your product or service. You may start with searching the trademark database and the Internet. If you can find any similar trademarks like yours, then prepare to register here www.trademarkangel.com yours as soon as possible. If not, come up with another one.