Niels Wouters, owner of clothing brand WOLF, knows better than anyone how it feels when you discover that someone else is too close for comfort and could be working against you. Luckily, he can do something about it. Thanks to good trademark monitoring, he has been able to take action against others several times already. Why does he do it? “Your brand, it’s like your child. You want to take good care of it.”
- Good trademark monitoring allows you to take action against anyone who is too close for comfort and perhaps working against you.
- You can monitor your trademark yourself with the BOIP Trademark Alert or outsource it to an IP professional.
- If your trademark is registered in the BOIP Trademarks Register, you can try out the Trademark Alert for 3 months free of charge.
Niels: “I get alerts almost every week telling me that other entrepreneurs want to use the same trademark as me, WOLF, or that they are planning to. ‘There they go again’, I think. At the same time, I feel secure because if I hadn’t registered my trademark, I wouldn’t be able to do much about it.”
WOLF stands for a particular mindset
“I could never really find my thing when I was looking for clothes: I didn’t like the fabric, or it shrank already after only washing it once. So, I thought I’d start a clothes brand myself for the man of today, someone who dares to go his own way, to chase after his dreams. That became the branding for the make”, says Niels.
Just like Niels, many entrepreneurs feel their brand is much more than the product they are selling. It has a deeper significance. “The WOLF brand is not just about clothing”, says Niels. “WOLF is also about a particular mindset. It stands for everyone who dares to go their own way, to chase after their dreams.”
Is trademark registration useful for your business?
You only actually own your name or logo if you have registered your trademark. If you have, then you have a monopoly on your brand. There are many advantages to that. Read all about it on our page ‘All about trademarks’.
Gap in the market filled in a professional way
“When the WOLF brand started, it felt like there was a gap in the market. I had everything ready, from logo to product, within three months. With hindsight, I sometimes think I should never have been so naive. All the same, I haven't regretted it for a second.” At a certain moment, Niels tells us, he was faced with a choice. “Do I want to be someone who just prints t-shirts, or do I want to do something bigger with it?” He chose for something bigger and decided then to make it official as well. He ended up at BOIP and submitted his first application for trademark registration himself.
Trademark registration - the feeling of being armed
“When I got the message that my trademark had been officially registered, it felt very surreal. You get that feeling of confidence, that you have the arms and ammunition you need to deal with it if someone decides to do something similar.”
Monitoring his trademark became too much
Niels found that monitoring his trademark was quite intense: “My trademark comes up quite a bit. I almost couldn’t keep up with the letters notifying me that someone else was too close for comfort and perhaps working against me.” He enlisted the help of a specialist from IntellectueelEigendom.be and passed the monitoring of his trademark over to them. “Of course, everyone has to decide for themselves whether they outsource that to a specialist or keep doing it themselves. In the end, your brand is a bit like your child. You want to take good care of it.”
Trademark monitoring: outsource to an IP professional or take care of it yourself?
You can outsource the monitoring of your trademark to an IP professional, like Niels did. You can also choose to take care of it yourself using BOIP Trademark Alert.
Go to the BOIP Trademark Alert promotional page
Find an IP professional (BMM.EU)