Imagine you create a marketing/branding package for a client. Your client purchases inventory and marketing materials with the new logo you designed, only to receive a cease and desist letter in the mail a few months later, threatening a lawsuit. Your client can’t use your designs. The responsibility could trickle down to your team.

The above scenario is avoidable.

If you fail to consider trademark protections when you create designs or other brand elements, you may face what boils down to one big problem: losing money. In the best case scenario, you have to re-do all of your work and offer a refund. In the worst case scenario, your client may seek compensation for the inventory and marketing materials covered in the now-useless designs. You might also be burdened by legal fees. Not to mention, your reputation could suffer tremendously. A failure to consider trademark protection can be fatal to a marketing business.

For more than 90 years, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo has promoted and delivered a high-energy, dynamic, multi-faceted, multi-week event to build a nationally recognized brand. But, how do they do it? And, maybe more importantly – how do they keep it fresh every year?

Each industry – and company – has its share of complexities. So, imagine when the objectives are not only marketing the biggest livestock exhibition and rodeo in the world, but also introducing fresh initiatives. Striking the right balance is key between managing expectations among multiple audiences and protecting a legendary brand.

guest post by Rinki Mukherjee

It’s been more than 10 years since I graduated from the Art Institute of Houston, aspiring to be a professional graphic designer. As I look back, I wish I had known a few things about this profession when I was entering the workforce. To celebrate 10 years as a creative professional, I decided to compile a list of 10 things I wish I knew at college graduation.

Karen Contos, PROS Interim Head of Marketing, presented key insights at the November 2017 Networking Luncheon about the rapidly evolving B2B buying experience and detailed how incorporating machine learning and artificial intelligence into your marketing strategy can reap rewards for your company in the age of modern commerce.

In today's digital era, there's a fascination with leveraging new marketing concepts, digital technologies and tactics to reach your audience. Customers are communicating in a multi-directional, non-linear fashion with the firm as well as its customers and prospects through a plethora of social media communities. Ultimately, this is making the customer experience and journey increasingly more engaging and social. Yet, this is also creating a managerial challenge as some customer segments may be very fragmented or very expensive to reach and serve. Pitch the wrong, or a weak, strategy, to your leadership and your potential growth and return on investment are likely to go south. Worse yet, your venture may even fail completely.

Thus, the push to implement new technology and digital strategies into marketing efforts runs rampant. It may come from a new client or a member of C-Suite requesting adoption a new social media channel or app. On the other hand, it may come directly from you and your marketing team as you push for leading edge online marketing initiatives. Inevitably, there are roadblocks to leading change in digital marketing efforts, and AMA Academy’s event on June 20 will provide you insight and tools to jump those hurdles and effectively implement new and dynamic marketing efforts.

Entries have been judged. The finalists have been announced. Now, 336 finalists representing more than 120 Houston companies await the arrival of the 2017 American Marketing Association (AMA) Houston Crystal Awards Gala on May 11. That night, winners will be announced, trophies will be handed out, and a new class will join the ranks of Houston’s elite marketers. The Crystal Awards Gala is Houston’s largest marketing event—attended by the marketing crème de la crème from virtually every industry and career level.

After accepting a record-breaking (and website-crashing!) number of award submissions, the Crystals’ organizing committee assembled many of the brightest marketing minds from across the country to judge the cache of brilliant entries.

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