Monthly Archives: February 2016

Protecting your brand: Trademark or registered trademark

Trademark vs registered trademark: What’s the difference?

We develop logos, taglines and brand standards for our clients. Along the way, we’ve occasionally been asked about trademarks and the difference between trademark symbols. Here’s a brief overview.

Trademarks protect brand names and logos.

The registered trademark symbol ® signifies that a brand name or logo is a trademark or service mark that has been officially registered with the federal trademark office.

The most important thing to know is that you can not use the registered trademark symbol ® until you have officially registered with the trademark office.

The logo that we created for Waste Management, below, uses the registered trademark symbol.

WM Service Anniversary Greeting

Alternatively you can use the trademark (TM) symbol. The TM symbol can be used whenever you wish to claim a trademark for your brand name or logo without officially registering with the trademark office.

The logo we created for TakeawayTee Foundation, below, uses the TM symbol.

TakeawayTee Foundation

You can find further information and a more detailed explanation from the US Patent & Trademark Office here:

One last point: Don’t confuse copyrights with trademarks. The copyright symbol © is not the same as a trademark. The copyright symbol is intended to protect original works (artistic work, literary work, songs, movies, etc). The US Patent & Trademark Office explains it well:

Front of MWC trade show booth design

MWC opening day and trade show booth unveiling

Today is opening day of Mobile World Congress 2016, the world’s largest conference for the mobile industry, and the grand unveiling of the booth we designed for Mitel for this event! With 2 levels and 9 meeting rooms, this is one of the largest displays we’ve ever created.  It was a real pleasure to work with Mitel’s team on this display and other promotional materials for this event (HTML email blasts, website landing pages, email signature images, etc).

To anyone who might be attending the event: Be sure to drop by booth #7A21 to visit Mitel.

To MItel: We wish you a successful show! We can’t wait to see photos of the booth in action after the event.