All right, , let’s talk legal for just a minute. This is something that has come up so much in recent conversations with friends, my entrepreneur, community clients in our Brain Builders group, community and recent podcast interviews that I’ve been a part of. And I think a lot of this has been spurred by the AI conversation around IP and what does this new world order look like with the, you know, creator community and the amount of content that’s being shared and re-shared and duplicated and repurposed. So I thought this would be a good time to actually have a legal conversation with a bonafide attorney to an, some, answer some of the questions that I had. So I thought I would share those with you. So this is just some highlights that I think is really important. And the first thing that came up is, do you want it simple or do you wanna be protected?
And I think that’s really important. And I’m not really a litigious person. And sometimes, you know, I can be pretty old school and just wanna do like a, a good old handshake. But when it comes to your ip, when it comes to the things that make your brand, your brand, or make you know, your content, your content, there are just some things you really do need to protect. So simplicity does not always equal protection in a legal sense. So you may think that let’s just make it a, you know, everyday language, one pa one page agreement. But do you want ’em simple or do you wanna be protected? And I think that’s just really worth sitting on for a minute of going. There’s just some things that we need to, like cash up, you know, some time, effort, and money on, and make sure that you, you protect the right things in the business and you should know what those are.
So let’s talk about what are those things in the business that you should actually, you know, spend some time protecting? All right. Here are, you know, kind of high level the areas that you wanna spend some time on. So number one is entity structure. I thought it was a staggering statistic to learn how many small businesses, how many entrepreneurs actually never get set up as a legal entity. If you have not done that, stop listening, get off your computer off of whatever you’re doing and go do that right now. And so what I mean up by that is like, are you set up as a sole proprietor? Are you a partnership an L L C? Like how are you set up legally? Now, the easiest, simplest thing for most people to do in the United States, cuz not all countries have a limited liability company infrastructure for legal entities. But in the US we do, and that’s probably one of the quickest, easiest, simplest entity structures that you can set up. When it comes to the S corp conversation that everyone
That I know is constantly talking about, that’s not an entity that’s a tax election. So you have to be an L L C and then you can fill out a piece of paperwork, check a box, and then have the export tax election, which it has some pretty awesome tax benefits. But you’ve gotta qualify for it and fill out a little bit of paperwork. It’s not that big of a deal. But not to get on a tangent and digress. Make sure that you actually have a legal entity set up, right? You need an operating agreement. You actually need to have legal documents stating what your business is. You need to have a business tax license, right? You need an an f e I N number, like you need those things. Like that is important. Step one basics, right? Step two is make sure that you’ve got the right business contracts.
Now, do you need to spend tons of money on a variety of contracts? Depends on what level your business is in. It’s one of the reasons that at Brand Builders Group, we partner with Legal Website Warrior and Heather Pierce because she is an attorney who has been working in the personal brain industry for a really long time and has created an incredible set of contractually binding agreements in a templated form. Now, that’s not gonna work for every single type of agreement, but for some of your basic ones, it’s a great template to then customize and, and versus spending $3,500 on getting an agreement, maybe you spend a couple of hundred dollars of having an attorney just to review what you’ve done with a template, right? So that’s an easy workaround. That’s what we’ve done for most of the path at Brand Builders Group to be honest.
And it’s like it gives you a whole bunch of stuff to read through, which you likely never read through. So it’s like a click of a button that says, ah, I agree to these terms of payment. That’s another way of doing it, that you don’t have to have a full service agreement where you have to put your name in, date it, sign it, you just put a button. So that’s another option as you’re looking at, are you doing this for volume, right? Right. So low dollar, high volume, or is this high dollar lower volume where you need a full service agreement? I think that all just depends on what you need in that agreement. Ip, IP protection payments, subscriptions deliverables, the list goes on and on, right? Which is why attorneys exist. But also why templates are really helpful and we’ll save you a ton of money, okay?
So you need service agreement you definitely need your website, online protection, you know, set up. Then you would have some sort of an affiliate agreement or referral partners if that’s applicable to you, but that’s the next one. Outside of that, you would need employment agreements if you have employees or if you want to, you have to have an employment agreement. If you’re hiring an employee, let’s just call it, you’re gonna need that. And then contractor agreements, right? So if you have 10 90 nines that work for you or vendors, you need a 10 99 agreement. And those are all the different types of business agreements. Now, we could go for partnerships, agreements, partnership agreements, and you know, stock agreements and you know, we could go on and on. We’re not getting into that. We’re just talking about the basics, right?
Do you need an employee, have an employment agreement, you have some contractors, you need a 10 99 agreement, right? So let’s just talk about the basics, but you need those things right after that, it’s ip, right? And these are in no sort of chronological order, just fyi or I importance order. But ip, right? So I love the way that my friend Heather Pierce the creator of legal website Warrior defined this. She said the IP conversation is really around copyright and trademarks, right? And you think about a trademark that is your very high level, right? Think about it. It’s like that’s your, your titles and your subtitles. It’s the high, high level stuff. Whereas copyrights is for the body of work, right? So trademarks are for your business name, your logos, your tag, your taglines, what I would call like your headline statements, right?
And then copyrights are really for the body of work, the content, the curriculum. Trademarks take longer. Copyrights can be, you know, done pretty quickly. I think I applied for and sent in and got several copyrights back within like a six week period where trademarks take a few months. Now, should you file for every piece of content? No. you could, but you don’t. But you wanna have your business name and your logo and your tagline if you have one that’s important. And if you have a very unique niche set of content, then yeah, you’re gonna wanna copyright some of your proprietary thought leadership in IP that’s in a course or a book or something like that. So again, this is a high level conversation. Yeah, we did an entire podcast interview on this with Heather Pierce, who’s an attorney. So if this was just scratching the surface, which it is, I encourage you to go listen to this entire hour long conversation and check it out. And don’t just learn from us, but get legally educated, make sure you’re protected, and make sure that you keep growing in a way that you’re never going to pay the piper down the line for the foundation that you didn’t set in the beginning. So go check out the podcast and stick around. I’ll see you next time.