At the core of every successful business are the trademarks the business uses to identify its products and services. Trademarks not only identify the offeror of a product or service but also provide assurances of quality and consistency to consumers. For instance, consumers know that the BIG MAC® they buy in Poughkeepsie is the same as one purchased in Boston.
Careful mark selection is critical to achieving consumer recognition of the company's products and services. For example, when one sees a print ad of a celebrity with a milk mustache, one immediately knows that the caption [Got Milk?] will be displayed. Just a few bars of music is enough for consumers to understand that McDonald's products are being advertised. Some consumers can retain jingles for years after they have been discontinued. For many, the slogan [See the USA in your Chevrolet] is instantly linked with certain images, tunes, and products, although the slogan has not been used for years. Thus, companies should exercise great care to select the strongest marks they can to achieve the widest possible market penetration. Because the mark will be displayed on products, in advertising materials, on the company Web site, and on its contracts, letterhead, and stationery, a variety of people should play a part in selecting the company's marks and slogans. Those participating in this selection should include employees in the sales, marketing, and legal departments.