Sirona Springs is now trademarked!

It was a long process, but I recently received this lovely letter in the mail. Sirona Springs is now a registered trademark!

If you own a business, I encourage you to do the same. It went pretty smoothly for me, and here’s the basics of what I learned along the way.

 

© or ™?
Copyrighting (“all rights reserved”) and trademarking are really different things. Copyrighting protects everything you write or print (even images). It protects you from plaigarism.
Trademarking protects your business name or logo so that no other entity can use it in a way that will confuse consumers. You don’t want to have two companies (or restaurants or stores) with the same name selling the same thing. You couldn’t be sure who you were dealing with.
Given a choice between trademarking my business name and/or my logo, I chose to trademark only my business name. That way I’m protected no matter how someone uses it. If you protect a specific logo, then only that version is protected. That’s a good idea if you have a logo that is really essential to your company (like the Nike “swoosh”). But if you changed the logo in any way, you’d have to trademark that new version again.

 

Where to start
When looking for some guidance, the website for the US Patent and Trademark Office has lots of good info, including videos that explains the process more thoroughly. And even walks you through the steps.
I applied for my trademark without an attorney. But I did choose the regular TEAS application, not the TEAS Plus version. The regular version is a bit pricier, but if there is a problem with the application, the Trademark Office attorney assigned to your case will help you and give you advice on how to fix it. That happened to me: some minor changes in wording were necessary. The attorney suggested what changes to make; I made them, and that was that.

 

A trademark for each category
You’ll need to consider how you will use the trademarked name (what kinds of products and services) and have proof of those for the application (eg. photos of labels or signage, or a website). And unfortunately you’ll have to trademark the name for each “category”. For example, if I were using my business name in selling soap and teaching soapmaking, I would have to pay double to get it trademarked in each of those business areas. The USPTO calls them “classes of goods and services”. Separate classes, separate trademarks. (This is actually an advantage: if you want to trademark a name that is already being used in a different class, you can.) The USPTO has a good video that explains the difference between goods and services.
And then once you put in your application (and pay your fee!), it’s just a matter of waiting. It took about 8 months total for mine. You can also check on and follow the process online.

 

Watch out for scammers
And once you apply, be prepared for letters that you may get in the mail that make themselves look like official letters from the USPTO asking for more money. These are scams, and they can be very clever. Just be sure to read everything you receive very carefully.

 

Have you trademarked your business name or logo? How was your experience? Feel free to share your experiences in the comments section!


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21 thoughts on “Sirona Springs is now trademarked!

  1. Good for you! Copyright is definitely different. 8 months is a bit long for a trademark though. I recently helped my mother trademark her business and it only took about 2 months top. I need to do this for my business before there is a problem.

  2. Congrats! I had to wait about 4 months for mine, and a company in the US had to be made aware – so I was a bit worried, but at the end, the process ran smoothly, the long wait is nerve wrecking though…

  3. Congratulations Ruth! I just applied for mine about a month ago! It has been great to see your business grow!

  4. Pingback: Get Your Business Started! « The Sirona Springs Blog

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