As an individual or as a business owner especially, there are a lot of assets that you manage on a regular basis. But there’s one thing that you might be overlooking: intellectual property.
Intellectual property includes all of your intangible assets that need to be monitored and protected separately. Let’s have a look at four common examples and tips on how to protect intellectual property.
Trademarks are protections that help distinguish your brand from other brands. They include names, symbols, and phrases that help differentiate your brand from others. They need to be distinctive and catchy that can help you promote or sell your product or service.
Examples of Trademarks
- Brand names: Big brand names like Apple, McDonald’s, and Zara.
- Product names: Several product names like iPad, Airbus, and Big Mac.
- Company logos: What does a tick remind you of? Nike. That’s what company logos are — for example, golden arches at McDonald’s.
- Slogans: One famous slogan by McDonald’s “I’m lovin’ it.”
- Font and words: Several brands use stylized fonts, such as eBay.
- Colors: Pink color associated with National Breast Cancer Foundation.
Copyrights are legal rights to anything you have created; this could be anything from a product to an idea. If you have made it, it gives you all the rights to copy it. Reproduce, display, distribute, and license the work.
Examples of Copyrights
- Musical composition.
- Sound recordings.
- Plan for a building.
- Computer software application.
- Code for a website.
- Software code for managing a database.
- Letters sent by a business.
- Emails sent by a business.
- Marketing plan
- Architectural plans.
- Annual reports
- Business proposals.
- Calculations in a financial forecast.
A patent is one of the most common types of intellectual property protection. Patents are for new, valuable discoveries and inventions that provide you the right to prevent others from using, changing, or selling your inventions or discoveries.
Examples of Patent
- Light Bulb: the electric lightbulb is one famous patented invention. Awarded to Thomas Alva Edison, the patent was later received by Joseph Swan for a similar product.
- Telephone: the patent given to the first modern computer was the Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer (ENIAC). It went to John Mauchly and J Presper in 1973.
- Other examples include Pen with a scanner, steel kidneys, and breastfeeding shirts.
Trade secrets are pieces of crucial information that are extremely important for a business as it gives them an edge over other competitors in the industry. If another company acquires a trade secret, it could be dangerous for the original holder.
Examples of Trade Secrets
- Coca-Cola’s recipe for their signature drink.
- McDonald’s Big Mac special sauce.
- KFC’s secret blend of 11 herbs and spices.
- Field chocolate chip cookies.
- Lena Blackburne Rubbing Mud.
- Secret client lists of any company.
- The search algorithm of Google.