Securing a patent is a significant triumph for both inventors and businesses. A patent safeguards the functional or ornamental structure of an invention. Once granted by the United States government, a patent empowers the holder to prevent unauthorized utilization of their patented concept or licensing of the patents to generate revenue.
Any infringement on that patent by another party can be subject to legal action. The civil courts have the authority to order the infringing party to stop the sale of products violating the patent. Additionally, they can grant compensation to the patent holder for the losses that may have stemmed from the infringement.
Occasionally, patent infringement arises because other parties are unaware of the patent and unwittingly create infringing products. To mitigate this, educating the public about a patent could be paramount. How can individuals or business effectively inform the public about the patents that they now hold?
The simplest and most direct methods of connecting with the public and providing them with new information encompass traditional news outlets and the internet, including social media platforms in many instances. For years, businesses and inventors have sent out press releases to magazines and local news channels alike, announcing patents, exciting new products, and cutting-edge production process that bear the label “patented.”
Especially when a concept is relatively novel or promises potential benefits and opportunities for the local community, news outlets may cover stories relating to the patent and help educate the public about this new idea or product. Press releases and news features can drive interest in a brand and raise public awareness. The internet is also a powerful tool to engage with consumers and competitors directly. Businesses can establish and maintain websites and webpages discussing and explaining their patents. They can produce videos to showcase on their own platforms and on popular social media channels. Investing in paid advertisements on social media can also help to facilitate the spread of company news, patents, and public offerings to a broader audience.
The innovative nature and profitability of a patent is reflective of the attention it garners. At the very least, educating others about a patent could help counter claims that infringement on the patent was unintentional.
Larger businesses and those with an established local presence may want to consider distributing pamphlets, targeted outreaching to specific businesses in adjacent industries, or conducting tours of their facilities to better inform the public about the patents the company has developed. By amplifying awareness about its intellectual property holdings, a company not only limits the likelihood of infringement but also improves the patent holder’s prospects of successful enforcement in the future.