Branding is the key to any new business venture, and with branding comes the brand name itself. The most common way to protect your brand name is to have it trademarked, as trademarking can allow you to release merchandise, market and operate in numerous markets (as long as you select those in your trademark application).
Trademarks can be tricky though and even household names have had their trademark requests denied:
- Kim Kardashian was denied the trademark “Kimono” leading to her rebranding to Skims
- Kylie Jenner was infamously denied the trademark “Kylie” after the singer Kylie Minogue opposed the application
- Cardi B’s attempt to trademark the phrase “Okurr” was denied, as it’s a commonplace term that was widely used prior to the application.
It’s no surprise that celebrities are keen to trademark phrases associated with them, as it can prove extremely lucrative. Famous sportscaster and boxing announcer Michael Buffer has held the trademark for “Let’s get ready to rumble!” since the early 90s and is reported to have made over $400million from the trademark, due to its use in games and adverts across the years.
But did you know that there’s a number of infamous phrases from UK TV Shows which haven’t been trademarked?
Love Island Trademarks
Let’s take Love Island for instance, only two of the iconic phrases have been registered by ITV, “I’ve Got A Text” and “Keeping My Options Open”.
Even phrases made famous by the islanders themselves haven’t been trademarked by the Islanders. Shaughna Phillip’s hilarious “Congrats Hun” hasn’t been trademarked, meaning that fashion company In The Style were free to use the phrase on tshirts and Maura Higgin’s infamous “fanny flutters” is actually trademarked by Ann Summers, opposed to Maura herself.
Here’s just a few of Love Island terms which aren’t trademarked in the UK:
- Put all your eggs in one basket
- My type on paper
- It is what it is
- Shoot your shot
- Pull you for a chat
- My head’s been turned
- Mad Moves
- I’m A Weapon
You can check if a term has been trademarked in the UK on the IPO.
As there’s no trademarks in place, these phrases have been part of numerous clothing ranges across the years. With the average tshirt selling for £9.99, there’s strong potential profit to be made if you registered the trademark, as you’ll prevent anyone else from using the phrase on merchandise.
Say you order 10,000 tshirts at £1.45 a tshirt. In selling them for £9.99, you could stand to make a profit of £85,400 (pre website and marketing costs). Just make sure you don’t make the same mistake as this guy!