As a small business owner, it can be daunting to consider the process of protecting your business ideas with a patent, or even a trademark or copyright. You’re busy and you are most likely focused on product development, marketing and sales, so it’s easy to let the IP process slide, but it is in your best interest to secure as much protection early on as possible.
Here are a few reasons why you should care about IP for small business:
The reality of the marketplace means that small businesses are open to attack by larger companies that are looking for unprotected products and new ideas. Known as trolls, these entities can cripple your business by co-opting your marketable idea.
“According to the FBI, IP theft costs billions of dollars each year to US companies. Thieves and trolls specifically target startups because of their limited ability to respond legally,” wrote Mary Juetten for a Small Business Development Center article earlier this year.
Pave the way for future investors and capital
Proving your ownership of your intellectual property makes your product and your company more attractive to potential investors and makes your business a less risky endeavor for lenders.
Expand your market
If you want to sell your product or service beyond U.S. borders, you might need additional protection. A study by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office showed that an alarmingly small percentage – 15 percent – of small businesses know that they need to file for IP protection in other countries. Help ensure your success in new markets by doing your research before you expand.
To learn more about protecting your small business intellectual property, contact EmergeCounsel today. We can walk you through the process and help you determine which steps your emerging business should take to ensure future growth.