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Social media: opportunity or threat?

It’s no longer possible to ignore it: social media is everywhere, being used by nearly everyone. As the use of these channels has matured, they are providing businesses with a real opportunity to interact with their clients in a more personal setting. But, there are risks too, particularly to brand owners’ trademark rights.

Social media is a hot topic and one that’s not going away. The number of channels is growing steadily. Whether YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter, everyone – from individuals to businesses – wants to benefit from the popularity of social media and claim their own foothold on the platforms most relevant to them.

A sound social media strategy is key

Due to the increasing use and popularity of social media, news and information (both positive and negative) is spreading at an unprecedented pace. Millions of messages are created every day and all kinds of topics are scrutinised in great detail. Many of your (potential) customers are active on these kinds of forums, so it’s important that you monitor any discussions about your business, what you do, and why and how you do it.

But, that’s not the only reason why monitoring social media is important. Your name may be being used or misused and your trademark rights may be being infringed. Due to their popularity, social media platforms have also started to function as virtual marketplaces. Real products are marketed and sold on them, but so too are counterfeit products.

Should you be worried about this? Not if you are well prepared. But, to be prepared, you need to immerse yourself in social media, understand what it is and how it works, and tackle the issues head on. For example, by pursuing a clear social media strategy in which you train your employees, think about possible crisis situations and, perhaps most vitally, monitor any use of your trademarks. Following what is being said about you on internet will not only help you to protect your brand, but it will also provide you with vital insight into your customer base. That knowledge will make brand management in social media an opportunity as well as a challenge.

Would you like to know more about brand protection in social media?

Novagraaf offers a variety of tools to help you to protect your brand online. If you have any questions about how best to protect your trademarks on social media platforms, or about how to develop an effective social media strategy, please don’t hesitate to contact us. You can also contact us with questions about brand management, trademark valuation and brand identity using the contact form at the top right of this page.