Distinctive packaging can drive sales, but it can also lead to knockoffs.
One of the many ways that companies add value and recognition to their brand is by the distinctive packaging of their products. Memorable packaging can crystallize your product and your brand in the minds of your customer.
Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but authorized use in bad faith will undoubtedly reduce the value of the products or even hurt the brand itself. More so the fact that there is strong associability between a product’s packaging and the brand itself.
A Malaysian fashion designer, in 2020, gained social presence by converting used food plastic packaging into unique-looking handbags, which caught the attention of many locals. These handbags were part of a project to encourage the public to reuse and upcycle plastic wastes. She has featured 3 different bags made of plastic packaging of well-known local biscuit and bread brands.
The above example illustrates the use of a brand’s packaging without destroying the brand’s image, as it may be deemed by the general public as ‘cute’ or ‘quirky’. However, the possibility of adverse use should be of concern to many brand owners, especially if significant effort has been utilized in promoting and marketing your brand.
The best way to protect your brand and packaging is through trademark registration. By registering your trademark, it allows for important legal benefits such as presumption of nationwide validity and enforcement powers, such as to legally prohibit use of your product packaging by authorized persons.
Trademark protection on product packaging can do wonders when it comes to brand recognition. Whether seeking protection for a logo is intended to be used on packaging, or a design of the packaging itself, it will discourage others from imitating your packaging design or arrangement of your product packaging. This in turn strengthens your brand and adds value to it.
Another option is to apply for copyright notification. Although copyright is a right that is automatically granted upon the creation of the work (i.e. packaging), copyright notification allows for better traceability and can assist in providing prima facie evidence of ownership and evidence of date of creation. This aids the copyright owner especially in court or any other enforce- ment procedures, whereby the notification can be used in court of as proof of the facts made.
A successful brand is a company’s most valuable asset. As such, protecting your brand should be your utmost priority.
Have any questions regarding intellectual property? Please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 03-91343113, and we shall endeavour to assist you.