Google’s Trademark Policy

September 28, 2009

I’ve noticed a lot of confusion over Google’s new trademark
policy.   To refresh everyone, Google
changed their trademark policy in May to allow advertisers to have trademarks
in their ads even if they are not the trademark owner.

There is a bit of confusion on how Google is handling the
approval process and some new ad status messaging. Google’s approval process
for ads to run on the trademark is done separately. Google first lets the ad
get approved to run for all other policies, and then they check the use of the
trademark and how the ad aligns with their new policy.  The process might take a bit longer and you
might see the new message “approved-limited.”
This does not mean that the ad won’t run in certain instances, it merely
indicates that the ad contains a trademark term, and that the advertiser wasn’t
given explicit permission from the trademark owner. Google will check any ads
with the message “approved-limited” continually to make sure it aligns with
their new policy. They will do the same for all keyword level URLs as well.

You can check yourself if a landing page doesn’t pass
Google’s trademark flag by checking on the approval status of an ad from within
the updated UI.  If the ad is approved
but the keyword is getting zero impressions you might have a trademark

Written by Erin Gordon (