Trade Mark selection; the fun part of IP, where you get to name your ‘baby’.

You want to choose a good strong name that’s unique, distinguishable and sets you apart from the crowd. You want your brand name to be retained and recalled by your target audience. How do you choose the perfect brand name and allow it to grow?

Here are a few tips to consider:

Will the brand name consist of words, designs, logos, letters, numbers, or a combination of these?

Imperfect recollection means consumers may not always recall the whole Word Mark, they may recall part of it, or the visuals, the pictorial elements, logo, colours, or fanciful elements. Attention should be paid to these aspects, making them distinctive and distinguishable from others.


The brand name should be distinctive to be registerable as a Trade Mark. Think about invented words, play around with words and conjoin them to make new words, consider ordinary dictionary words which bear no meaning in relation to your goods or services. Look at words which suggest or allude to your area of interest, and which evoke positive connotations.


Look at the Mark visually and say it out loud, sound out the phonetics, do a straw poll to test the pronunciation, is it open to interpretation, is it easy to say, will consumers trip up over the Mark? Could it be misinterpreted? Check the meaning of the word, make sure it isn’t offensive, misleading or contrary to public principles of morality.  Ensure the Mark doesn’t have any negative connotations. Conduct linguistic, translation and transliteration checks on the Mark if you have plans for expansion into other countries.

Police and Protect

Once you have decided upon your brand name, and applied to register it as a Trade Mark, take steps to police and protect it from unauthorised use, and from becoming generic.

Sign up to a Trade Marks Watching Service which will watch to see if any conflicting Marks are filed in your field. Take care to educate the public about your Trade Mark. It is wonderful to build a successful brand, but you do not want to find yourself on the end of a cancellation action if your Mark becomes generic.

So, there are just a few things to consider when starting upon your brand name creation journey.  When you have whittled the list of possible names down, be sure to check that they are free to use and register by conducting pre filing availability searches in your territories of interest. If you need any assistance with obtaining Trade Mark registration please contact us at

Jane Kennedy

UK and European Trade Mark Attorney at Vault IP