Global applications to trademark hashtags increased by 64% in 2016 compared to the previous year, according to a report by CompuMark.
The findings revealed more than 5000 applications had been made since the first trademark application in 2010, 2200 of which were made in 2016.
Notable registrations from well-known international brands include #lovetravels (Marriott), #getthanked (T-Mobile), and #gofor2 (Hershey).
The research also showed that while global hashtag trademark applications are on the rise and the US remains the leader in the number of trademarks applied for – 33% of all applications since 2010 – the country’s total share of applications in 2016 was only 28%, compared with 35% in 2015.
Rob Davey, senior director, global services, CompuMark, said: “Even though overall, brands are registering more hashtag trademarks than ever before, there has been a slowdown in the rate of growth in the US market, possibly due to the time and effort it takes for success.”
Despite a slowdown in its rate of growth, the US still registered the most hashtag trademarks in 2016 (608), followed by Brazil (226) and India (141) in second and third place.
Davey added: “What the overall rise in global applications does indicate is that brands are seeing the value in going through the proper trademarking process in all areas, including social media, to make sure they are protecting themselves from possible infringement and mitigating the associated risks.”
The company that applied for the most hashtag trademark applications in 2016 was Colombian-based broadcaster RCN Television S.A., with 50 registrations related to its Grita Gol football programming.