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Registration of a Very Personal Brand Name

How much do I believe in federal registration of trademarks and brand names? Well, this much...more

White Color Trademark Goes Up in Flames

A couple of years ago, our friend John Welch over at the TTABlog reported about a white color trademark that had acquired distinctiveness, according to a rare precedential TTAB decision...more

SUMO CITRUS — Sign of Super-Sized Flavor?

While many other places in the country are enjoying signs of spring, here in the Twin Cities, we’re hanging on to the white stuff, for a while longer; we shoveled 22 inches worth this past weekend! There’s something about...more

A Few Highlights from FUSE 2018 in NYC

Every time I leave the annual FUSE conference (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017) — appropriately dubbed The Event for Design & Brand Strategists, I return home infused with extra creative energy, and this year in New York City...more

4/13/2018  /  Brand , Marketing , Trademarks

What You Need to Un-Suspend a Trademark

Suspended high above Chelsea Market in New York City are these eye-catching ads for OWYN... ...That’s a new brand for me, I’m unsure how to pronounce it (Own, Owen or Oh Win), but OWYN apparently stands for Only What You...more

Carvana and Google: Co-Branding Nirvana?

Carvana — online car dealer and operator of “a higher state of car buying” — sports a halo in its non-verbal logo shown above, but is it an angel when using the Google name and logo in t.v. ads?...more

When Does My Pillow Become Your Windfall?

Mike Lindell, has built an impressive business around a pretty simple brand name and trademark: We’ve previously written about the MyPillow trademark, noting the apparently narrow scope of rights it enjoys, as a result of the...more

Amazon Smiles With Iconic Non-Verbal Logo?

Yesterday, while on the highway heading to a client meeting, I noticed a truck that looked like this...more

Talk to Chuck, Trade Like Chuck, or Chuckit?

A recent advertisement caught my ear because it involved financial services offered by a guy named Charles Hughes a/k/a Chuck Hughes and the catchy marketing phrase Trade Like Chuck...more

Snickers Has a Cross Section TM Registration!

It is frequently becoming more and more difficult to remember all the topics we’ve covered here over the last — almost — nine years. A recent Snickers end cap display jogged my memory...more

Does Google’s Enforcement Explain New Ads?

Remember this North Memorial Health billboard ad — sporting a plain and literal Google reference — that we wrote about a few months ago, where nominative fair use was pretty clear to me?...more

Are You Leading With Buddha’s Hand Too?

Size and prominence of wording on business signs, product labels and hangtags will often emphasize brand signals. Yet, sometimes decisions are made to scream generic names instead....more

Legitimate Super Bowl Ambush Marketing

Not all ambush marketing is created equal. Some can cross the line and create a likelihood of confusion as to sponsorship. Some falsely advertises. But, some is totally fair use and lawful....more

The Minnesota Miracle That Lasted a Moment?

Well, it was fun while it lasted. Some incredible moments last longer than others, and when the stars are all lined up, they can even translate into a movement. Yet, the blistering loss in Philly proved that our hope of being...more

More Fair Use of the Super Bowl Trademark?

Downtown Minneapolis is starting to come alive for upcoming Super Bowl LII, you can feel the energy building and commerce flowing, new ads and signage being erected almost daily...more

Happy Birthday: TTAB Turns Sixty in 2018

We follow closely and write a lot about what goes on with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO); these ironmongers do too, really well....more

Super Bowl Ambush Marketing Games Begin?

We continue to have Super Bowl LII on our minds here in the Twin Cities. It’s hard to avoid thinking about the upcoming “Big Game” with ads like these blanketing our skyway maze...more

1/8/2018  /  , Football , Logos , Marketing , NFL , Trademarks

#SBLII: #HereWeGo?

We’ve come a long way from April 1, 2017, until now, with the steady drumbeat — and ads galore — in preparation for the upcoming Super Bowl LII in downtown Minneapolis...more

Oh Trademark Registration, You’re So Vain?

Ron, you’re so vain, you probably think this post is about you, don’t you, don’t you — actually, it is, or, let’s say, more about your recent in-actions — still, I hope you enjoy this cute little melody....more

Will the Velveeta Brand Melt into Laughter?

What do you think of when you hear the word Velveeta? Me too, childhood — complete with piping hot Campbell’s tomato soup — and perfectly melted grilled cheese sandwiches. Later in life, at least for me, came liquid gold and...more

Classic Trademark Fair Use of Google Mark?

North Memorial Health must be spending significant advertising dollars at the moment, with a variety of ads appearing all over the Minneapolis skyway system, above is one current example....more

Rosland Drops “What’s in Your Safe” Tagline?

Cause and effect is difficult to establish when all the relevant facts have not been assembled. We certainly don’t claim to have all of them here, with Rosland Capital’s current TV commercial. ...more

Branding Stories Around The Lack of Memory

I’ve been meaning to write about a TV commercial for a while, but I keep forgetting to do it. Perhaps I need the very product being advertised in the commercial, because what gained my attention was the clever tagline...more

11/6/2017  /  Advertising , Slogans , Tagline , Trademarks , USPTO

Some Subtle Stories Make Great Trademarks

One of my passions is to find common and favorable ground between legal and marketing types. One of the readings during week three of Seth Godin’s intensive altMBA workshop reminded me of a great example to illustrate how...more

Does getaroom Make U Want 2 BookaRoom?

A tv commercial for yet another hotel booking website just caught my eye, called getaroom...more

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