But for all of the me, there's really not much worth writing about if there isn't a take-away for you, so here's a couple of things for you to keep in mind from this whole lesson:
- There are going to be copies. From internet start-ups to musical acts, there are legions of goomers who are convinced that your idea is okay, but that they could do better. If your not careful, don't execute well, or aren't true to the essense of the vision, they just might beat you.
- If your IP is strong, protect it. If Oreo is going to be the greatest Internet cookie on the planet, then you're going to need to spend the money to secure Oreo.com, .net, .org, and maybe even .co.jp. If you're just experimenting, there's a tremendous likelihood that someone will see some glimmer of your success and gamble that it will be worth more to you later.
- The copiers are relentless. Recently, I was working with a company who had thirty-year old trademarks on products in a couple of unique market segments with a very select handful of customers. A couple of years ago, a Russian company entered the market and tried to compete against them in those markets using an obvious knock-off of their marks. Eventually, the trademark infringer gave up and disappeared, but the probably managed to grab a few dollars from unsuspecting customers before they left. If there are 100 pennies sitting on the counter, never underestimate some people's willingness to attempt to grab one.