A trademark is a characteristic that distinguishes one brand from another. It can be, for example, a logo, a name, a slogan or a sound. If you register a trademark, you get exclusive rights to use it and can prevent copying and imitations.

The difference between trademark and brand

A trademark is basically just a characteristic of a good or a service. A brand is the sum of associations the market has with the company or its products. The trademark can be developed and controlled by the company, and can be legally protected. The value of the brand in is largely determined by the customers.

Why register a trademark?

By registering a trademark, for example a word, symbol or sound, you get exclusive rights to this. Thus, no one else has the right to use this in their marketing. This reduces the chance of being copied, and you are in a stronger position if this does happen. With a registered trademark, it is easier to carry out brand building and thus create a competitive advantage.

– The trademarks clearly increase awareness of holistic branding, and are insurance against simple copying of any successes. (Photo: Marius Rua)

Trond Vilhelm Lund

Dairy manager Rørosmeieriet

Man in white coat and hat holding cup of sour cream

Trond Vilhelm Lund

Dairy manager Rørosmeieriet

Different types of trademarks

A trademark can basically consist of all kinds of signs that are suitable for distinguishing one company's goods or services from those of others.

The three most common types of trademarks

Word marks, figurative marks and combined marks are the most common trademarks to apply for.

Trademark wordmark

Word mark

Wordmarks consist of plain text, such as words, letters or numbers

Trademark figure mark

Figure mark

Figure marks consist of figure/logo elements without text.

Trademark combined

Combined mark

Combined marks consist of a combination of text and figure.

Other types of trademarks

There are also other types of trademarks that can be registered. These brand types are somewhat less common, and some of them can be difficult to get registered.

Thumbnail for sound mark

Sound mark

Thumbnail for trademark motion mark

Motion mark

Thumbnail for Trademark multimedia mark

Multimedia mark

Example of pattern as trademark


Example of colour that can be registrered as a trademark

Colour mark

Example of a position mark that can be registered as a trademark

Position mark

Example of a shape that can be registrered as a trademark

Shape mark

Thumbnail for example of a hologram that can be registered as a trademark


Do you need help in the application process?

Get an overview of the possibilities available to you and what you must do if you wish to file an application. The experts at NIPO are very experienced and can give you insight into what is important for you to consider during the application process.

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