Is it worth pursuing IP rights for your startup when it’s a service/market/platform?

If you could obtain a patent, that would be a great place to start and you should definitely pursue that. A patent would basically grant you a monopoly on the technology and let you exclude others from using it, or at least they would have to pay you for such use. But, assuming there is no patentable technology like you said, any other intellectual property right may or may not be worth it. It really would depend on your business model and plan.

A trademark on the name of your company is an example of an IP right that could be valuable in building your brand. The trademark would ensure that no one else could use your name and free ride off of any goodwill that you may have worked to build among consumers and customers in the marketplace. On the other hand, that may not be super important to you at the early stages of your startup and you may want to wait until later to get such protection.

IP rights definitely have value because they allow you to differentiate yourself from competitors. However, there will also be a cost of protection. You need to determine whether such value is worth the cost of protection. Sounds easy enough, but if you do decide to pursue IP rights, you should consult with an IP attorney who can help you through the process.

If you are looking for an IP attorney but are concerned about the typical costs associated with the traditional legal search, you should visit LawTrades where we work to trim those costs. We will match you with an experienced IP attorney for a free, no obligation consultation. Good luck w/ the platform!