In business, it’s not enough to simply provide a quality product or service. The success or failure of many companies can often come down to marketing. Marketing really begins when you choose a name for your business or product.
It’s important for businesses to avoid brand confusion. In other words, you don’t want your customers to confuse another brand with your offering. Once you have taken some initial steps to ensure your preferred name is available, you can start to move forward with your business plan. If at this point, you decide to register your business as a limited liability company (LLC), it’s important to understand what type of protection you can expect for the name of your business.
Protections are limited
When you form an LLC, the name of your company will receive some degree of protection. Because LLC papers are filed with the secretary of state, those protections will extend to the borders of the state in which you filed. However, that’s where the protection provided by an LLC ends. A business in a different state could use the name of your business to operate in that state.
Think about your long-term goals
If you have no intention of expanding your business beyond the borders of your state, an LLC may provide you with enough protection. However, if you think you might want to broaden your reach, or even if you intend to sell your products over the internet, you should consider an option that provides you with a better level of name protection.
Trademark registration can help provide you with a more substantial shield. There may also be other means of ensuring someone else can’t piggyback off of what you’ve built. A skilled legal professional can help determine how to align your business needs with your goals.