I just purchased this week a new 2-liter Coca-Cola bottle in the shape of its well known smaller bottles. This is part of a new promotion by Coke to capitalize on the recognition and brand power contained in the contour shape of the bottle. Few if any brands are more known world-wide than Coke and its bottle. I once heard a story that the only term more known world-wide than “Coke” is “OK.”
The Coke bottle design was introduced decades ago. The bottle shape has been a registered trademark since 1977. That’s right, a shape of a package or produce can be produced as a trademark, to the extent the shape is not functional.
- Coke registered bottle shape (http://tarr.uspto.gov/servlet/tarr?regser=serial&entry=73088384)
LESSON: Anything that distinguishes your products and services from those of your competitors – a name, logo, slogan, color, sound, or shape – may be a trademark and may be registered. To make your brand stand out, make everything about it as unique as possible, and protect it!