July 2, 2008

Branding part III - Making it yours

This next step requires a little research, but it's critical to look into before you plan to start using your logo: make sure nobody else is already using your logo.

In our case, with the flying plate logo, we needed to make sure nobody else was using a logo that looked like ours. A visit to the USPTO, the United States Patent and Trademark Office, got me started on a logo/trademark search.

I did a search to find out my design codes, which are:
11.03.09 Plates (empty)
03.17.01 Wings
and 24.03.25 (other emblems and insignia) when a wing design comprises an emblem or insignia.

Then I went to search for logos using those codes at the USPTO search site. A search for PLATE and WING and got a lot of hits including one for something called Violent Vegetables (?!) After a little tinkering, poking around, and some help from our local business development office, we got our flying plate logo off the ground, so to speak.

For help with this step, you can contact your local Small Business Administration, or SBA. You can also find information online at http://www.sba.gov/. For specific information regarding this post, you can check out the SBA's information regarding copyrights.


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