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asdfsafadsfdsafds Four legal issues in your crowdfunding campaign.

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You are a creative entrepreneur with a massive vision expanding every day. Some of your friends have run successful crowdfunding campaigns for their businesses and you’ve wondered if you should do the same. Before President Obama signed the JOBS Act in 2012, you could only give your crowdfunded investors (or backers) rewards. You know? A signed t-shirt. An autographed print. Limited edition tote bag. Now, with the JOBS Act, Title III equity crowdfunding rules approved by the Securities and Exchange



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asdfsafadsfdsafds How do you protect your trademarks when collaborating with someone else?

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As a creative entrepreneur, you are probably exploring collaborations and partnerships with other peeps. These collabs are likely to manifest in the form of: A signature event A class A bundle of services A single service offering Or maybe you’ve decided to partner up more long term and actually form a business with someone. Either way, one of the first topics you should address is…. *Insert drum roll* “Who owns the name?” Yep. So, how do you protect your trademarks when collaborating



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asdfsafadsfdsafds What is a trademark clearance + why you absolutely must have one.

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There are two very important (read: equally as important) steps in the trademark process. The first step is the trademark clearance, and second is the trademark registration. Usually, when peeps are trying to DIY their trademark registrations, they skip the first part. And, that’s why we are going to discuss it here. What is a trademark clearance? A trademark clearance is a full review of common law (unregistered) trademarks, pending and abandoned trademark applications, and existing and expired trademarks to



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asdfsafadsfdsafds Three key ways that your trademarks will make your business money (and gain you freedom).

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The most important reason that you want to take ownership of your brand elements like your brand name, logos, and slogans/taglines is so that they become more than just a “cool” way for people to identify your brand. Note: You can also get trademarks for your distinctive packaging, color schemes and sounds but those are less common so I am not speaking about them specifically in this post. It’s because owning the trademark for your brand assets transforms them from



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asdfsafadsfdsafds What is the one big trademark secret that these 20 big brands know and you don’t?

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I blogged previously about the common mistake that I see – people giving their products or services super-descriptive names. It’s a big no-no in trademark world. You can’t register a federal trademark for a name that’s merely descriptive. If you do get it through the system, it’s only after five years, if you’ve successfully proven that your use of the mark has given it a secondary meaning. In other words, you’ve garnered such fame with the descriptive name that people



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asdfsafadsfdsafds Are you infringing on someone’s trademark?

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Are you infringing on someone’s trademark?

Most times, when I talk about copycats + thieves I do it from the perspective of you being the do-gooder who needs to protect their brand. But, in reality, you may be the offender. You may not even know it. You, dear genius, may be unknowingly infringing on someone’s trademark. Everyone makes mistakes. But, this is a huge faux pas that can cost you a pretty penny… So, let’s reel you in now. Let’s talk about what actually constitutes trademark infringement. For purposes



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asdfsafadsfdsafds The biggest mistake you’re making when naming your product or service.

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Let’s talk about something very important. Naming your products and services. But, before we dig in let me tell you… you’ll probably look at me differently after reading this post. You’ll probably whisper about me behind my back. You may call me names. You might even vow to never return because GOTDAMN I took the joy out of one part of your business that you absolutely love. I’m okay with that. I don’t mind being a debbie downer. A killjoy.



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asdfsafadsfdsafds The one thing you didn’t know about getting a trademark for your new logo (and it’s not what you think).

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You’re launching or rebranding your biz and plan to make a killer impression. So, you dial up your graphic designer for a new logo. You’ve been day dreaming of a logo that makes an introduction all on it’s own. Hi-falutin’. Fancy. Magnetic. Has the voodoo to woo. You talk colors. Typography. Shapes. You go through revision after revision until you’ve nailed it. Man. You can’t wait to leak this beauty to your bff’s and slap this baby up on your website. You puff out



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asdfsafadsfdsafds 4 ways the law can supercharge your coaching business so you can impact more people and make more cash.

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  I wrote a guest blog post over on Rebecca Dickson’s blog that I’ll pretty much call my legal tell-all for business coaches of all kinds. I wanted to give a sneak peek excerpt over here, but ask that you visit her blog to read the entire thing. You don’t want to miss it. Trust me.  These days, it seems like everyone’s an entrepreneur. And, as the small business industry grows, the coaching industry grows also at rapid pace – life



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asdfsafadsfdsafds Branding and Trademark 101 for Food Truck Businesses

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It’s lunchtime. Hungry 9 to 5ers troll the food truck zones for the latest and greatest delectables on wheels. More than 7 trucks are lined up, back to back. Now, they must decide which truck will receive their hard earned cash. They could choose the truck with the shortest line, right? But no doubt, they’ll wonder “Why is the line so short?” Of course, you’ve got a core group of loyal customers. That’s fantastic. But, hundreds of potential customers are untapped +



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