Competitors’ names in your AdWords campaign; it is OK isn’t it?

We’ve all done it, thought about it, wished we had done it?

You’ve got a great product or service but it’s a competitive market place and some of your competitors have bigger marketing budgets and more brand awareness than you.

There’s a lot of people searching for THEM and not YOU. But you know those prospects could easily become your customers if only you could get them to YOUR landing page!

SOLUTION: Add your competitors’ brand names into you Google PPC keyword list. That’s OK isn’t it?

Recent case law would seem to suggest YES!

Cosmetic Warriors Ltd (Lush) has been successful in a UK High Court¬† infringement action against and Amazon EU Sarl. The High Court ruled that Amazon’s use of the term ‘Lush’ infringed trademark law, but ONLY when the term triggered an advert which itself contained the term Lush and which then directed prospects to a competitor’s site.

The Court was clear that if the term Lush triggered an advert, which itself did NOT contain the trademarked term and which directed prospects to similar products offered by a Lush competitor, it would NOT infringe trademark law.

The Google France case also supports this.. ‘Thus the CJEU pointed out that infringement should [only] be found where the average consumer may erroneously think that the goods advertised emanate from the trade mark proprietor’.

The full judgement is on BAILII



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