Branding Speaker, Trainer, and Coach

Christian Louboutin’s Branding Lessons

Christian Louboutin Shoe Designer

Christian Louboutin Shoe DesignerThe fashion world is abuzz with 2 key legal battles:

  1. A federal appeals court ruling that shoe designer Christian Louboutin has a clear trademark on red-sole shoes. The only time other designers, such as Yves Saint Laurent, can use a scarlet sole is when the shoe is red.
  2. Lululemon Athletica has sued Calvin Klein for trademark infringement on 3 design patents for its yoga pants.

So, if you are not a fashionista, but an entrepreneur, what are the lessons here and how do they pertain to you?

  • Color is a phenomenal branding tool – When consumers and prospects closely identify a unique color with you, you earn mindshare! Just as Johnny Cash became the man in black and author Tom Wolfe is rumored to wear all white even at the gym, you too can adopt a signature color.
  • Unique design can be protected by the courts – as evidenced by Apple’s $1 billion patent lawsuit victory over Samsung. And, consumers pay handsomely for innovation design. For example, those yoga pants by Lululemon are $98 vs. $19 for generic. And, we all know that Apple’s products never go on sale.

How can you paint the town red? How can you spark innovation?

  1. Hey Liz
    A quick clarification, please.
    There must be hundreds of colors under the red umbrella.
    Are you saying any red = every red and can be exclusively branded
    and given patent protection?

    Hope all is well with you.
    A quick update for me: check outs and ins have changed everything.
    In the last 3 yrs, my younger brother & father permanently checked out.
    My mother was checked in to residence Alzheimer’s care.
    I slowly discovered that no time for selling/marketing defines retirement.
    The dust has mostly settled: all the stuff is at least sorted, all the people
    are in a better place, I’m wondering how I ever fit work into an already busy day. Life is good, again.

    • Hi Arden:

      It is NOT that all of the color red is trademarked, it’s that a red sole is protected and “owned” by Christian. If you decided to create Einstein shoes and painted the soles red, you would be in violation.

      And, happy to connect with you and catch up too!

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