While I’d love nothing more than to spend a few hours writing a fairly comprehensive guide about United States trademark law, who needs a trademark, what a trademark actually protects, the application process, which marks actually get approved and everything in between, i’m not going to. There is a much easier (and refreshingly thorough) way for you to get this information: straight from the horse’s mouth.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office produced a 41 minute informational video that — while a wee bit heavy on the scripted cheesiness (sorry to anyone at the USPTO, I say that with love), is an excellent crash course for any small business owner to watch and come out relatively well-versed in all things trademark. Enjoy. Grudgingly sit through it. Either way, you’ll be smarter on the other side.
RESOURCES AND LINKS:
The USPTO website can be found here, and the basic trademark search tool on their site (TESS) can be found here. If your Trademark Application is relatively straightforward, I’ve successfully used LegalZoom.com in the past to submit my application.