Small business owner, tax time, EOFY


24th April, 2024

How to create and maintain an effective IP strategy

As we celebrate World Intellectual Property Day on April 26, it’s a good time for your business to take stock of your intellectual property (IP) rights.

IP rights can underpin a business’s distinctive identity and competitive edge.

A registered trade mark, for example, gives your business a powerful asset that can distinguish your brand from competitors and build customer trust, as well as providing you with important legal protection for your competitive advantage. 

What does IP cover and how is it protected?

IP refers to creations of the mind and can cover your business’s brand, logo, invention, design or even a new plant variety.

Your business may have one or multiple IP assets that require protection.

IP protection includes registered rights such as trade marks, patents, plant breeder’s rights and design rights, as well as automatically-protected rights like copyright.

These IP rights offer important legal protections and grant you the exclusive right to profit from your ideas. 

IP strategy for SMEs

How do you create an effective IP strategy?

Identify your IP

Take stock of all your IP assets. You can use IP Australia’s free tool to identify what IP protection you may need in two easy steps.

Do your research

Check to see if your idea is new to the market. For trade marks, you can use IP Australia’s free TM Checker tool. For patents, you can use IP Australia’s new, free Patent search tool.

Assess the value of your IP rights

Firstly, IP assets should value the same way as physical assets.

An IP asset can be sold or licensed for financial gain and its value can increase over time.

Gauge how significantly your IP assets contribute to your business’s value and unique selling proposition. To find out how, visit IP Australia’s website.

Monitor the market

Keep an eye on your competitors, social media and the internet for potential infringement of your IP.

For example, monitor your brand’s online presence and track mentions so you can identify who might be using your registered trade mark without you knowing.

Enforce your IP rights

Infringement of your intellectual property (IP) can impact your product, business and brand.

Also, if you discover that someone is using your IP without your permission, there are different approaches you can choose to enforce your rights.

Why review your IP strategy?

Your IP strategy is a dynamic tool that should be regularly reviewed and refined so you can adapt to changing market conditions, advancing technologies and your own evolving business.

By reviewing your IP strategy, you can ensure your valuation of existing assets, their ongoing relevance and protection is sound.

Safeguard your innovations; protect inventions, trade marks or other creative works.

To read about other businesses that have used IP rights to protect and commercialise their ideas, visit Case Studies | IP Australia.

Finally, for more information on registered IP and IP strategy, visit IP Australia’s website.

Information provided in this article is of a general nature and does not consider your personal situation. It does not constitute legal, financial, or other professional advice and should not be relied upon as a statement of law, policy or advice. You should consider whether this information is appropriate to your needs and, if necessary, seek independent advice. This information is only accurate at the time of publication. Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of the information contained on this webpage, MYOB disclaims, to the extent permitted by law, all liability for the information contained on this webpage or any loss or damage suffered by any person directly or indirectly through relying on this information.