By now, we’re all very familiar with social media and sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Tumblr. Social media is not only used to express who we are to the world, but also as a way to spread our ideas and information to people who would never have had the opportunity before. In relation to trademarks and marketing, this shift has not only presented companies and professionals with opportunities, but also introduces challenges when it comes to brand protection and market penetration.
In a conversation with Joshua Braunstein, Vice President and General Manager of Corsearch, he noted that: “Companies now have to spend a lot more time thinking about how they’re going to use their brand in new markets and how they’re going to leverage social media to get better coverage for their brands.” The proliferation of brands and the campaigns associated with them has accelerated and become more dynamic than ever before.
Now, more than ever, it is critical for companies to monitor their brands and how they’re used and seen around the world.
One challenge that companies face is how to differentiate real branded social media content from social media chatter. According to Braunstein, in some ways online conversations can also help brands. “One of the real beauties of social media is that it’s a holistic, organic expression of what people are feeling. There’s nothing more important to a brand than how it’s perceived. If a brand holder is interested in the equity of the brand, the reputation their brand has, and what people think of it, customer chatter is really important.”
Traditional marketing channels are important for surveillance and counterfeit monitoring, but social media chatter is an important indicator of a brand’s success and the challenges it faces. Ultimately, both matter.
To help companies protect their brands, Corsearch has improved the scale, usability, and sophistication of its online search tools over the past year. The company has developed new product sets, including online surveillance tools, domain registration and management services, and a trademark clearinghouse registration service where customers can register their trademarks with the Trademark Clearinghouse to protect their trademarks as new gTLDs become available.
In addition, the acquisition of CitizenHawk earlier this year enabled Corsearch to expand its online brand protection tools: from social media watching, to e-commerce monitoring, along with more in-depth brand protection and compliance tools. “It’s important that we don’t just provide information to customers. We give them insights that allow them to act. We give them tools and abilities to actually act on their trademark needs and protect their trademarks,” Braunstein said. Corsearch plans to integrate all of these experiences so brands can protect their trademark, watch trademark filings around the world, and manage their online presence all on a single platform.
The relationship between the brand and company with the consumer has become more important with the prevalence of social media and the Internet age. “A trademark is a contract between a buyer and a seller,” Braunstein noted, “It’s a representation of the quality and the service and the brands relationship to you. The consumer has to say ‘Yes, I get it.’ When that social contract exists between a buyer and seller, that’s when you have a strong trademark.”
What do you think makes a strong trademark?