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IP merchandise protection
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The brand licensing sector and digital ecosystem, what are the challenges you should know about?

Branded licensing is one of the largest industries in the world. Like many industries it has had to adapt to recent changes in consumer trends as the global pandemic accelerated the migration from brick-to-click shopping. We are now seeing more consumers shopping online than ever before.

Today’s borderless digital economy has delivered a truly global marketplace for licensors and licensees alike, but it’s these very channels in which threats to branded licensing agreements exist.

As these digital channels multiply, it is becoming harder for brands to maintain visibility of who is selling products marked with their brand, and to know if distribution agreements are being respected. Failing to act against such threats are likely to cause a loss of sales, and royalties, putting your brand reputation at risk.

Getting a holistic view of what is happening with your brand and products in the online world in order to make the best decisions and plan your digital strategy is one of the biggest challenges any company in the sector faces.

Here are some of the challenges that you may be facing online:

Unauthorized branded merchandise
is one of the major threats, impacting both licensors and licensees. Not only are unauthorized sellers benefiting from the value of the official brand free of charge, but they are also trading branded products throughout the same channels as authorized licensees. This added competition is detrimental to sales/royalties for all parties involved, especially when we consider that consumers are unlikely to be aware of whether a distribution agreement is in place. This lack of awareness can also put consumer health at risk due to the low quality materials and ingredients often used by unauthorized sellers.
Misuse of your brand
can cause lasting damage to your reputation if it goes unnoticed. It is crucial that guidelines are in place to ensure that your intellectual property is used correctly by authorized licensees. It becomes more complex with the instance of unauthorized use which is why it is so important to track both those who have the right to use your brand, as well as those who don’t.
Poor visibility of who is selling products marked with your brand
in which markets and channels, and under what conditions. In order to manage this risk, it's important to get a holistic view of ALL online channels. This can be a painstaking job to manage internally given the sheer size of the digital environment, with masses of marketplaces and social networks operating in various regions throughout the world. Failure to act against such infringements can harm future expansion plans as someone may already be operating in foreign markets, selling merchandise marked with your brand.
Noncompliant distributors
are the final risk we would like to bring your attention to. Some licensees may not be honouring their contractual agreements, and this can impact your relationship with not only this distributor, but others too. Clear terms of agreement must be in place and monitored to ensure that they are being respected.

Want to know if your brand is facing any of these threats and how to stop them?

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Football market is exposed to fake merchandise & tickets

Football merchandise is particularly susceptible to the threats which exist and emerge online, but it doesn't stop at apparel. Ticketing to live football matches has also been targeted by those who wish to piggyback on the size and value of this market.

Here are some of the challenges that football clubs may be facing online:

Football merchandise counterfeit
Fake branded merchandise
also known as counterfeits, have been a plague to the industry, and perhaps more specifically to football shirts. In fact, £5 million worth of counterfeit merchandise was seized by the Premier League alone in the 2018/2019 season, and the threat has not gone away.
Brand misuse
is also a significant threat which impacts the value of commercial deals, consumer confidence and brand reputation.
Maintaining visibility
of who is selling your tickets, in which regions and markets, and for how much is a key element in the interest of safeguarding consumer confidence and brand reputation. Failing to manage ticket sales can also have far greater implications for the most high-profile sporting events, with stadium overcrowding and a danger to life as a result of counterfeits and duplicates.

Find out how the football market is exposed to fake merchandise & tickets

Book a free demo!

What can Smart Protection do for you?

In a single platform you can gain visibility into your intellectual property infringements and control over your licensing agreements to help you stop threats. Our software tracks, detects, and analyses the information and mentions of your brand and products in the online world, giving you visibility of the volume, and the option to eliminate infringements, or take appropriate action.

Our solutions include:

What are the benefits for you?

With our solutions you can:

Gain visibility

of the digital ecosystem

Get information

about your licensing agreements

Gain control

over your brand and products

Information is power! We can empower you with information that allows you to cut through the noise and focus on maintaining the value of your branded licensing agreements and your brand reputation online.

Keep your Brand safe from fake branded merchandise online.

Get your free demo!

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