What Is A Color Trademark | Minute Law | Spear IP

I love talking about color trademarks because
they’re kind of unique So what is a color trademark? Remember, first of all, that a trademark is
kind of a signifier of a brand, right? So, something that — like a logo or a name
— where when people see it or hear it, they instantly think of your brand. A color trademark is the same thing, right? It is a color that is used in connection with
your product or service that, when folks see it, it’s so recognizable that they instantly
think of your brand. The best way to explain it is by example. So, think of Burt’s Bees, the chapstick, right? You see that yellow tube, even from far away,
without seeing any other name or logo on it and you kind of know, “Oh, that’s a Burt’s
Bees product.” The same thing with UPS. You see a big brown truck, you’re pretty sure
it’s UPS. Probably the most famous example is the Tiffany
blue box, right, with the pretty, white bow. You see that robin’s egg blue box, you know
that it came from Tiffany’s. So, how do you protect a color trademark? It’s hard for a new brand to have protection
in a color trademark. It’s not impossible, but it’s hard because
of that recognition factor. Usually it takes a little bit of time to build
up that recognition. And that recognition goes by a couple of names
— acquired distinctiveness or secondary meaning — those are kind of technical-sounding terms
but basically it’s that recognition factor. So that’s a little bit about color trademarks
and I hope that helps, I’ll see you next time.

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