October 23, 2014

Protecting Slogans With Trademarks (Infographic)

by Guest Blogger

Millions of dollars are spent every year in slogan development and promotion. Federal trademark protection may be applied for to secure these valuable investments, but slogans are only federally registrable if they identify the source of goods or services and distinguish them from the goods or services of others.

A slogan that is inconspicuous and merely provides promotional information is not federally registrable. For example, DESIGNED FOR WOMEN for dietary supplements was refused registration because it failed to function as a trademark.

[caption id="attachment_4375" align="aligncenter" width="640"]

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Gotta look close to spot the applied-for phrase[/caption]

Slogans that are common expressions may also fail to qualify for federal trademark protection. The Trademark Manual of Examining Procedure cites HAVE A NICE DAY as a common phrase that would not normally be perceived as a mark and would therefore be refused registration.

Slogans that are merely laudatory are also unregistrable. AMERICA'S FRESHEST ICE CREAM and THE BEST BEER IN AMERICA were refused registration.

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Great Beer, Lousy Trademark[/caption]

Setting aside the trademark issues, most slogans are designed to sell more products. For this reason, slogans should be developed with the brand's strategic objective in mind. While some slogans, such as DeBeers' 1938 slogan, "A Diamond is Forever," stand the test of time, others, such as Pepsi's, "Any Weather is Pepsi Weather," do not. The infographic below examines what works and what doesn't.


Source: BestMarketingDegrees.org

The lawyers at Trademarkology provide trademark registration services backed by the experience and service of one of the nation's oldest law firms. Click here to begin the process of protecting your brand name with a federally registered trademark.