If you want to grow and scale your business, you’ll want to know the basics of intellectual property.
Building a bullet-proof brand is super important, it all comes down to protecting your IP.
Growing a business without robust protection is incredibly risky, and to be honest, it just isn’t worth it.
What’s the difference between each?
1) Copyright protection = protecting the work you create i.e. something you write, videos, software coding etc.
- In the UK, copyright protection exists as soon as you create a piece of copyright-able work
- Different in the US, where there is a register
- There is a catch – it’s your responsibility to ‘tell the world’, to make sure you’re fully protected
- This mostly comes down to your contracts, website&disclaimers. Make sure you have the right wording
- You don’t want to accidentally transfer ownership/let others use it when you don’t want them to
- Important to have NDAs in place if needed
2) Trademark protection = to protect your branding, i.e. your business/brand name, product name, slogan or logo/brand images
- Register in certain places, like the UK, US or EU
- Unlike copyright, you need to register your trademark
- The trademarking process (wherever you register) will take a few months, so start ASAP
- You ‘ll want to do this before growing&scaling your business
- If you don’t, you’re open to risk – accidentally infringing (copying) someone else’s mark, or someone ‘stealing’ your brand
- Benefits – ownership of your marks, protection from copycats, recourse if someone copies you, reputation building, brand recognition, saves money in the long run
3) Patent protection = there to essentially protect your inventions
- Rare to come by
- Need to meet certain criteria to be granted a patent
- Expensive&difficult to obtain
- Very lengthy process
- Need a specialist lawyer to deal with them
- A big commitment