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Strategic considerations for defending a trademark

The circumstances of each trademark dispute are going to be different. According to some, it is just as important to focus on how and when to enforce that trademark protection as it is to get it in the first place. The trick is to have a plan about how to handle defense against infringers.

Strategies for enforcement

Priorities of a business will vary, but some general strategic considerations include:

Pick the right time: Many trademark holders are prone to delays or even failing to act. There may be times where delays are unavoidable, but taking action once one is prepared to do so is often a necessary part of protecting the mark.

Determine appropriate action: One does not need to send in the entire army when a commando unit can get the job done. Sometimes overkill can even be counterproductive as well as expensive.

Pick the right tone: The tone of the initial contact can be very important. An aggressive tone may be appropriate in some circumstances, but could cause the other side to respond just as strongly, or perhaps try to gain sympathy by posting the letter online. Perhaps a more measured tone will get the desired effect. Some companies have even used humor, which can actually generate outside interest from the media and lead to free publicity.

Work with an experienced attorney: Trademark law is often quite complicated. Moreover, how one handles one dispute can affect other disputes down the line. It is important to work with an experienced attorney who can map out and develop a strategy that weighs all the necessary factors in the case and how these will be building blocks for the future. Often the health and success of a business will depend upon this.

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