Is Your Brand Too Similar, or Unoriginal? Do you know? Do a Reverse Logo Search and Find Out.
Designing a brand identity can be one of the most enjoyable parts of starting or updating a business/organization can also be perilous. Your newly created brandmark might be too similar to another’s intellectual property. But unless you have done a thorough search, you might not ever know. But, did you know that there are several ways to actively search and find out if your brand identity ( logo ) has similar doppelgangers already out there, many options of which are for free? And if you were first, you might want to know if a brand is mimicking your brand identity system.
I compiled the best methods of discovering whether your brand identity system is too similar to other trademarks, icons, designs, and work marks out there for you.
As we previously covered some brands may be uncomfortably similar to others and may require a brand update. But, many branding systems are legally similarily designed especially in packaging design, to gain from another competitor brand’s head-wind. And sometimes they might even encroach another brand’s intellectual property with copy-cat designs. Each country, region, has unique rules when it comes to protecting intellectual properties, and the legal actions that can be taken. We suggest if you are interested to read up on that here ( LegalZoom ).
Reverse Logo Search Tools & Methods
Reverse Logo Search Method 1 – Google Image Search
This method is probably the easiest. But the results are somewhat intangible, they will not provide you trademark results and they will find other usages similar to the exact image you provided but not similar markings. Still, this can be a useful place to start your logo/design/wordmark/packaging reverse search.
Reverse Logo Search Method 2 – TinyEye
TinyEye is great and it seems to focus just on the image content similarities, better than Google in that regard and less about the meta-context, such as where it came from what context it came from etc. I’d recommend this one as a starting place first.
Reverse Logo Search Method 3 – TradeMark.Vision
TradeMark Vision is an awesome tool that can help you find out if your IP is unique, but it comes at a ridiculously expensive price. I would not suggest this for design agencies as it is cost prohibitive. I believe this is more meant for legal teams or fortune 500 companies needing to do background research and IP protection.
Reverse Patent Search Method 4 – Europe Only – E Search Plus
E-Search Plus is European Unions IP database. I think it’s far more modernized than the United States’s TESS system. I am not even sure if you can compare the two.
Reverse Patent Search Method 5 – USA Patents Only – TESS ( Trademark Electronic Search System )
TESS is like Lexus Nexus from the 1990s. The user experience is archaic, but this tool is filled with critical data. American’s need to do better to modernize this IP search user experience. Not only should this be free and a public utility so that it doesn’t’ cost a fortune using such databases as TradeMark.Vision it should be as good as EU’s if not better. Doesn’t it make sense that USA would want to empower design agencies, companies, legal firms to be able to know if there are similar marks out there in the same industry to prevent IP pitfalls? It appears to have been rather designed for legal aids, and data researchers, than marketing directors, but that’s my take on this.