The International Trademark Association (INTA) is a global association of brand owners and professionals dedicated to supporting trademarks and related intellectual property (IP) to foster consumer trust, economic growth, and innovation.
As a not-for-profit association, INTA’s role is to serve its members and society as a trusted and influential advocate for the economic and social value of brands. To fulfill this role, INTA will focus on the following strategic directions:
I. Promote the Value of Trademarks and Brands
Trademarks and related IP rights are indicators of the origin and the quality of goods and services. As such, they constitute the anchor of brands. Brands encompass the vision that drives companies’ strategies, their culture, and their offerings to consumers and society. Brands are vessels of trust, marketing tools, and financial assets.
II. Reinforce Consumer Trust
- Protection of trademarks and related IP. Companies and consumers need strong laws, efficient registration and protection mechanisms, and well- trained and equipped IP Offices and registries. Consistency, predictability and cost efficient registration procedures remain a priority for INTA members. INTA will strengthen its interaction with the legislative authorities, advocating for stronger laws, as well as providing support to executive offices and registries in order to provide companies and consumers with a strong framework for trademark and related IP rights protection.
- Harmonization of laws and convergence of practices. INTA will continue supporting international treaties as well as other forms of legislation, regulation, and harmonization of rules and practices allowing easier and better access to trademark and IP rights protection. INTA will be a facilitator of best practices as well as a platform for exchange of ideas and solutions to ensure a more consistent and certain legal environment.
- Enforcement. Strong laws and efficient registration systems without proper enforcement mechanisms are useless. Globalization, the advancement of social media, mobile media, the internet of things, as well as multi-media channels are both an opportunity and a challenge for companies and consumers. Off- and online counterfeiting continue to be a highly profitable business that directly affects consumer safety and impacts GDP, employment and social welfare. INTA will vigorously advocate for effective enforcement mechanisms. INTA will be at the forefront of the counterfeit battle by engaging legislators, the judiciary, customs authorities, law enforcement and investigators. INTA will continue engaging courts by means of amicus filings and through education and communication on the value of brands for companies, consumers, and society at large.
- Business value of brands. Brands determine the people companies recruit, the products and services they put onto the market, the messages they convey to their customers, and the channels they use. To become part of this holistic approach to brands, trademark and IP professionals should understand and advance the value of brands, as well as their potential as communication, marketing and financial assets. INTA will provide its members with the tools to demonstrate the value of brands and how the work they do impacts brand value.
Consumers continue relying on the brands they trust. However, the relationship between brands and consumers has evolved. Brands have become a product of their environment. INTA will continue to demonstrate that brands serve the interests of brand owners, consumers, and society at large.
III. Embrace Innovation and Change
- Reinforce trademarks as sources of information and brands as promises of delivery. INTA will monitor legislative trends and initiatives that threaten brand owner property rights and the ability of consumers to make informed purchasing decisions, such as standardized or plain packaging, and will advocate for a safer Internet for consumers. INTA will engage consumer organizations to jointly promote the importance of brands for consumer information and safety.
- Communicate the contribution of brands to economies and society. Through economic studies and multiple communication methods, INTA will promote the positive side of IP, namely its contribution to GDP, employment and social welfare around the world. INTA will intensify its communication to non-IP media to contribute to a better appreciation by the public of IP rights. Considering that many economies rely on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and entrepreneurs, INTA will reinforce its SME and entrepreneur membership and highlight the importance of brand protection regardless of the size of businesses.
- Brand equity. Companies or individuals own their trademarks and related IP. Consumers influence, in more ways than ever before, how a brand and its equity evolve. INTA will build bridges with consumer associations, professional organizations, and academia to be part of the brand equity conversation.
Innovation inspires. Companies and consumers are embracing innovation at a faster pace than ever before. Consumer values and needs are also evolving. INTA will monitor change and innovation, assess its impact on brands, and provide support and value to its members.
- Evaluate changes as a result of technology, innovation, and evolving
consumer needs and values. Through its different committees and task
forces, INTA will analyze changes, study the correlations between brands
and innovation, and assess potential impacts for brand owners. INTA
will be a platform for thought leadership on change and how members can
take advantage of opportunities and avoid challenges brought about by
innovation and change.
- Educate members on the impact of innovation, technology, and change on brands. Through education, resources, and communication, INTA will continue to be a forum of discussion and knowledge sharing for its members. This will further allow INTA to produce opinions or recommendations on existing and future trademark and IP rights-related issues affecting both companies and consumers.
Provide innovative, valuable services to members. Innovation and technology are also impacting associations. INTA will take advantage of innovation and technology, identifying trends and opportunities to provide enhanced services to its members, both at organizational and individual levels.
INTA will follow these strategic directions through global advocacy, communication, education and networking opportunities via its offices in New York, Washington, DC, Brussels, Santiago, Chile, Shanghai, Singapore, its representatives in Geneva, New Delhi, and its membership in 187 countries. INTA will continue expanding its membership and presence to serve all of its members globally.