Protecting Your Internet BrandPresentation Transcript
BOISE STATE UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF BUSINESS AND ECONOMICS Entrepreneurship Day in Idaho April 14, 2011 Brad Frazer Hawley Troxell Protecting Your Internet Brand
Obtain domain names.
Building value and goodwill.
Internet-specific branding issues.
“ The set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that, taken together, account for a consumer’s decision to choose one product or service over another. If the consumer (whether it’s a business, a buyer, a voter or a donor) doesn’t pay a premium, make a selection or spread the word, then no brand value exists for that consumer.” Seth Godin
“ The intangible sum of a product's attributes: its name, packaging, and price, its history, its reputation, and the way it's advertised.” David Ogilvy
ELEMENTS OF BRAND
In the old days . . .
Brand was tightly controlled
Consisted of the trademarks and maybe one or two other elements, like:
ELEMENTS OF BRAND
Now . . .
Brand is limited in scope only by your imagination.
Careful policing is necessary.
Consider T-shirt hypothetical.
ELEMENTS OF INTERNET BRAND
Domain Name and Website, including URLs Link
Facebook page(s) Link
Twitter account Link
Videos and Photos Link
Search Engine Presence Link
SoMe “800-pound Gorillas”
“ Exit Strategy” Philosophy
Objective it to build a strong defensible brand (including all the elements of brand).
Fringe benefit is the impact of the process on your exit strategy for the company.
What are trademarks?
A trademark or service mark is any word, slogan, logo, symbol, sound, color, smell, or other item that serves as a means of commercial source identification of a product or service.
E.g., Nike, Coke, Geico Gecko, Color Blue
“ Trademark” is not a verb.
Use and Registration
Trademark Rights Accrue Through Use
What are domain names?
A domain name correlates words to a numeric identifier called an “IP Address” that tells your web browser where to look for a particular web site.
Top-level domains, e.g., .com and .net.
Second-level domains, e.g., “Amazon.”
Are trademarks and domain names the same thing?
Amazon.com is both.
HawleyTroxell.com is not.
What about Golden Acres Retirement Community, whose website URL is boiseretirement.com?
A trademark is a state of mind.
Why is Internet branding and trademark protection important? Discussion . . .
Moral of the Story:
Failure to do so leads to loss of brand, goodwill, and valuation.
How to Choose Trademarks and Domain Names
Hint: Google, Kazaa, Skype, Twitter
Choose fanciful names that you can both protect as a trademark and register as a domain name.
Problem with descriptiveness, e.g., Facebook.
Due Diligence, or, “Do You Know Who’s Using Your Brand?”
“ Due Diligence” means employing tools to search and monitor how your brands and marks are being used on the Internet by:
Enforcement (“Protect the Brand”)
TM infringement lawsuits
Touchstone: likelihood of confusion
UDRP and Cybersquatting
Touchstone: bad faith
Right of Publicity and Right of Privacy
So, who owns “microsoftsucks.com?” Another example:
email@example.com 208.388.4875 From a WHOIS search at nsi.com: Domain microsoftsucks.com: Secaucus Group Inc PTY 4684 BOX 0843-03073 Balboa, Ancon 0000 PA Administrative contact: Technical contact: Billing contact: Secaucus Group Inc Domain Administrator firstname.lastname@example.org PTY 4684, BOX 0843-03073 Balboa, Ancon 0000 PA Phone: +1.2157163164 Fax: Record dates: Record created on: 1998-05-21 04:00:00 UTC Record modified on: 2009-09-12 00:41:43 UTC Record expires on: 2011-05-20 UTC
The “Picket Fence” Defense
But beware, e.g., .xxx
But beware, e.g., .co
Beware front running
I like Moniker!
Google Adwords Keywords
What are they? Link
Your using third-party marks and brands
Others using your marks and brands
Issues: Is it trademark infringement?
Search Engine Optimization (“SEO”)
Find the “800-pound Gorillas”
Legal issues: beware claims of cybersquatting and trademark infringement.
The “Terri Welles” defense
Memes, Viral Marketing and SoMe
Memes and Viral Video:
Blair Witch; OK Go “White Knuckles” Video
Old Spice Guy Video
Twitter usernames Link
Own Your Internet Brand
Police Your Internet Brand
Enforce and Protect Your Internet Brand
Maximize Value in Your Internet Brand
Sell(?) Your Brand
Conclusion and Q&A Brad Frazer [email_address] 208.388.4875 @bfrazjd