Past Meetings

Branding and Selling Your Company

1/18/02  Back

The January 18, 2002, meeting kicked-off with the first installment of a new segment, the "ten-minute drill." This exercise allows one member of the group, who is part of an emerging company, to present a brief introduction to their company and products and receive feedback from the rest of the group. Dann Lemerand of Reliance Software Systems presented a PowerPoint presentation on his company’s product, CDR Web. Dann can be contacted at 410.586.9215 or

The feature topic, "branding and selling your company," was discussed from the perspective of both law and public relations.

Eric T. Fingerhut, an attorney with Shaw Pittman's Intellectual Property Group provided information on how to protect products, logos, and brand names under patent and trademark laws. His presentation, titled "Brand Matters," discussed the basics of branding, trademarks, domain names copyright and patents. He also discussed brand creation, legal clearance, U.S. and non-U.S. trademark protection, domain name issues, brand enforcement and protection, and brand building. The presentation closed with quick "rules to remember," including: 1) reserving a domain name does not amount to a legal right to use it, 2) the more arbitrary the mark, the broader the scope of protection, 3) conduct a trademark search, 4) seek federal registration, 5) international trademark protection is very important, 6) watch the representations, warranties and indemnities, 7) cybersquatting is stupid and potentially expensive, 8) domain registrants are bound by ICANN Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy, 9) be watchful of unauthorized framing and deep linking, and 10) pick and choose your battles. Eric can be reached at 703.770.7971 or

Jerry Johnson, Senior Vice President at Brodeur Worldwide, the world's largest public relations and communications consultancy focused exclusively on technology-driven companies, discussed branding and marketing of technology products, including advertising and product definition. His presentation, titled "Corporate Strategies: Branding & Positioning," provided an overview of branding, including elements of a brand, brand personality and the four branding "Ps" (positioning, packaging, promotion and protection). He also led a discussion of sample brands and how brands relate to messaging. Jerry can be reached at 202.715.0515 or