In our previous blog on how to choose correct trademark class of services we have mentioned several trademark classes for both goods as well as services. Therefore, if you ever get into...
In the era of intense competition in the market, it is difficult for entrepreneurs with the same product category and class to distinguish their product from their competitors. So, customers find difficulty in identifying the brand of the product because of its similarity with other brands or products.
If you are running your business in the market, you might notice several companies using your service or product mark to confuse your customers regarding the brand. So, if you don’t want to lose your customers and want to clarify your prospects regarding your brand then, it is crucial for you to register your mark under the government of India as “TRADEMARK.” To know more about Trademark and its importance for your business, let’s proceed further.
What is Trademark Registration?
According to the Section 2 of the Trade Marks Act, 1999, a trademark is a mark which distinguishes the goods or services of one company from others. The trademark could be any symbol, name, logo, labels or numerals.
Trademark ensures the protection of certain names, symbols, phrases, signatures, devices, label, words, designs or any other combinations that are associated with your products and services.
It helps your customers and prospects to easily recognize your product in the market. Trademark is registered under Trademarks Act, 1999 and governed by Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Controller General of Patent Design and Government of India.
There are various classifications of trademark registration under Trade Marks Rules, 2002 and your registration may vary accordingly.
What are the different Types of Trademark?
1. Product Mark
Product mark is used to identify the mark on goods or products instead of services. This type of trademark helps the customers to identify any tangible product easily. The applications filed under Trademark Class 1-34, represent products and hence classified as Product mark.
2. Service Mark
Service mark can be is identify the service instead of tangible products. Customers or prospects could easily recognize particular service through its service mark. All the applications filed under Trademark Class 35-45 represent services and termed as Service mark.
3. Collective Mark
Collective mark is used by any association or public institution or companies listed under Section 8 of Companies Act, 2013. This mark is used to inform public about the distinctive features of their company or product or service collectively. It is used by the members/traders to distinguish themselves or their products or services in respect of the rules, standards set by company. An example of this mark is “Reliance Group Logo”, and the companies who are using this logo represent themselves as a part of “Reliance Group”.
4. Certification Mark
A mark or sign that specifies the quality, origin, materials, or other details of the product or service issued by the owner is a Certification Mark. This helps to bring the standard of the product in terms of its guarantee and warranted to the customer. Furthermore, This mark is usually seen on phones, packed food, toys etc which ensures that the product has good quality and examined under several standard tests. This mark helps to gain the trust of customers towards the product about the product specifications. Examples of this mark are ISO Mark, Wool Mark etc.
5. Sound Mark
This brand ensures safety of a sound associated with any product, service or brand. It helps the audience to easily identify particular product or service represented by that sound. Examples of this mark are the sound of Airtel, IPL etc.
6. Pattern Mark
This mark is associated with any design or pattern followed by the company to distinguish their product or services. The owner must specify the uniqueness of the pattern if they want to register under this Trademark. Companies using this mark are “Burberry”, “Louis Vuitton” etc. as they follow a particular pattern in their products.
How to register for Trademark in India?
The Trademark registration in India follows the following steps:
1. Search for unique name
Firstly,You should come up with some unique name or logo for your brand. The logo must not be previously used by any other company and there could be no prior registration for the same. Your logo or name must specify the reason behind that and could be able to relate with your company. Common phrases, names, signs, sound may not be considered for trademark registration in India.
2. Preparing Trademark Application
After finalizing your name, you need to prepare the trademark application which costs around Rs3500. You must carry the following documents when you are preparing your trademark application:
- Copy of your logo in the size of 9X5cm
- Form 48, Signed
- Aadhar Card of the Directors
- Partnership Deed/ Incorporation Certificate
- Address proof of Directors
- Identity proof of Directors
3. Filing the Registration Application of your brand name
There are two ways to file your registration application. Either you can file manually or online. Under manually, you have to visit at any Registrar of Trademarks with trademark application and all relevant documents and in 15-20 days you will receive an acknowledgment receipt. But, in case of online registration you will immediately receive an acknowledgement receipt.
4. Examining Registration Application
Once application has filed, then the governed authority examines the application regarding the prior registrations and checks whether it compiles by the law or not. If any dispute/ conflict arise in the application, it will not proceed further.
5. Publication in Trademark Journals
Once government authority approves the application, then it will publish in the Trademark Journals to raise any objection regarding the applications. But, If no objection arises within 3 months or 120 days in few cases, then the brand name is accepted and proceeds further for the trademark certification.
6. Issuance of Trademark Registration Certificate In India
If there will be no objection regarding the application within 3 months, then the registrar of Trademark accepts the application and issues the Trademark Certificate.
What are the benefits of Trademark?
1. Help your customers to find you
Trademark helps your customers to recognize your products or services among all other brands or products. It helps to distinguish your products and services from others and generates awareness regarding your brand in the market.
2. Economically efficient communication tool
Trademark is an economically efficient communication tool through which you can easily communicate to your target audience as they are already aware about your offerings. You can easily convey messages, new services/ products to your audience across culture, language or border.
3. Standardize your products/services.
Trademarks help the company to distinguish themselves from others and maintain goodwill in the market as it prevents other companies to use your name or logo to degrade your image. It helps to standardize your products or services using Certification marks or other trademarks.
4. Most valuable asset
Trademark acts as an identification mark of your products and services. It is the most valuable asset of your company as it helps to gain you a competitive advantage in the long run. It has a high leverage and proved fruitful at the time of merger and acquisitions of the company.
5. Utilization of your social and internet media
Trademark helps you in proper utilization of your internet and social media as audience is fully aware about your brand and products; and can find about your services on social media as well.In addition, You can also communicate to mass people through online mode and generate awareness of your products.
6. Effective against unfair competition
Trademark gives the authority to registered companies for stopping others from using their name or logo to degrade their market image. However, if any company still uses the identity of the registered one, then it can take legal actions.
7. Ease in hiring employees
As Trademark helps companies to maintain their brand image in the market, it also makes easier to hire better and skilled employees without giving any explanation.
Therefore, if you wish to create a unique identity of your business, then you must trademark your company’s name/logo/symbol, etc. Furthermore, with the trademark registration you receive powers to sue anybody who is found using your company’s name and logo without your consent.
Therefore, once you have registered your company, get the trademark registration as soon as possible. In case, you have any query or difficulty regarding the same, then contact us. You can also leave a comment below and we will get back to you soon