Some entrepreneurs may not know the true value of their business’ branding image – but this can be a powerful tool that impacts your ultimate success. Developing a brand image should not be left as the last priority; it should be tended to after a business is established and taking off. Businesses should protect themselves from the risk of loss associated with assets by getting insurance — and since intellectual property is one of the most valuable business resources out there, many owners are taking into consideration that IP is truly worth the investment.
Your IP rights can:
- Set your business aside from competitors
- Be sold or licensed, issuing an important revenue stream
- Give customers something new and unique
- Form an essential part of your branding
- Be used as security for loans
Intellectual property law principles make sure your name, your content and your products belong to you in a way that prevents competitors from copying your ideas. How? Intellectual property is made up of numerous areas, from logos and corporate identity, to blogs, products, services and processes that make your business stand out from other online companies and competitors. Your business size and specialty don’t matter, either — whether you’re a small artist or an online podcaster with thousands of listeners, you need to be cautious of not only the potential value of what you create, but also how to maintain that value to keep your brand something strong and unique.
However, it’s especially important if you have a small business that you protect any unique properties or products from your competitors because the results can decrease your company’s growth or even cause you to lose revenue. Losing retail share early on in a business’s growth can be time consuming, especially if you’re trying to find the guilty party — and provide guilt — without any legal protection. Unfortunately, if you haven’t protected your IP, it is your responsibility to make sure no one is using your selling points.
In short, protecting your IP rights is simply securing your business. Obviously, the kind of business you own will decide what your business needs are when it comes to IP protection, whether it is a patent, trademark, or copyright. It is what highlights the product or service that means the most to your business — and it’s in your best interest to keep that special and secure.