My brand name is descriptive of the business offering. Is there still a way to register this trademark?

Photo of Jan Buza

Written by Jan Buza

Co-founder of Trama

Generally, a descriptive trademark will get refused by the intellectual property office. Sometimes, the applicant can claim the mark has acquired "distinctiveness through use" if the mark has been active in commerce for a longer period of time and enough people have come to associate the mark with its goods/services despite its rather generic name. However, proving acquired distinctiveness is not straightforward and is not an option for new businesses.

Therefore, if your brand name is descriptive of your business offering, you will have to either make changes to your name to make it more distinct or try registering a graphical logo as a figurative trademark instead.

You can find tips on what to do and what not to do in our article How can I increase distinctiveness of my trademark?

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