Insights from 20,000+ Naming and Branding Projects

Emotionally Preparing Yourself for Trademark Conflicts


Sometimes you fall in love with a business name. You’re head over heels and ready to rush off into the sunset with this great brand name idea…

And then you find out it’s taken!

Running into trademark conflicts is actually quite common when naming a business. Unfortunately, the truth is that in today’s competitive business world, with hundreds of thousands of businesses started every year, most names are taken.

Now that you have plenty of names, and you have brainstormed tons of creative business names, it is time to move into the name validation process, which includes checking potential names for trademark conflict.

Don’t leave yourself heartbroken. Prepare yourself for trademark conflicts before you set your heart on a name that might be taken.

What to do if you encounter trademark conflicts

Trademark conflicts do not have to mean the end of the road for your business name. It’s always a good idea to consult with a trademark attorney before you completely ditch a name.

However, if it does end up that you have to seek a new direction with your business name, here are a few tips for avoiding legal issues.

Be extra creative to avoid Trademark Conflict

Try to gather as many unique business name ideas as you can. Whether you are coming up with ideas on your own or crowdsourcing your business name, seek out ideas that are out of the box and are very relevant to your one-of-a-kind business. These kinds of names are less likely to be taken, and that will help you avoid trademark conflict.

Trademark validation

It is a good idea to run a trademark search before you fall in love with a name. Trademark validation can give you a good idea as to whether or not a name will work for you before you start receiving cease and desist letters from a company already using the name.


Overall, when you are trying to come up with the perfect name for a business, trademark conflict is a reality that you should prepare for. Create a list of names that are more likely to pass a trademark test as a backup for your first option. This will make the news that you have to choose a different business name a little less painful because at least you will be ready for it.

About the author

Meghan O'Toole
Insights from 20,000+ Naming and Branding Projects

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