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We received 142 responses from 34 different countries to the IP STARS survey on conference-attending habits. The US accounted for 37.1% of answers, followed by the UK, with 15.0%, and France, with 6.4%.
When asked how many IP conferences they personally attend in a typical year, 68.1% said one to three, 25.5% said four to six, 5% said seven to 10, and a hardy 1.4% said more than 10. We asked respondents which specific conferences they attend. The INTA Annual Meeting was the clear favorite, with 90.1% of respondents attending it. Other popular meetings were the INTA Leadership Meeting (41.5%), AIPLA Annual Meeting (13.4%), AIPPI Congress (13.4%), PTMG Annual Conference (12.7%), ECTA Annual Conference (12.0%), MARQUES Annual Conference (12.0%), APAA Annual Conference (9.9%) and FICPI Congress (6.3%).
Respondents were asked what their primary goal was if attending the INTA Annual Meeting in Barcelona. It seems catching up with old friends is the priority – the overwhelming favorite answer, with 75.0%, was to meet existing clients/contacts. Make new clients/contacts was second with 16.4%, learn about latest trademark developments got 4.3%, and “other” got 4.3% (this included answers such as “it is a dual purpose meeting old and new clients/contacts”).
Likelihood of conclusions
We also asked respondents to tell us how likely they were to do 12 specific activities on a scale of “not likely”, “somewhat likely” or “very likely”. Having one-to-one meetings with existing clients/contacts is the most likely activity, with 95.2% of respondents saying this was very likely, 0.8% saying somewhat likely and 4.0% saying it is not likely.
Having one-to-one meetings with potential clients was also a popular activity, with 81.5% of respondents saying it was very likely, 8.9% saying it was somewhat likely and 9.7% saying it was not likely.
Food and drink also feature prominently in trademark practitioners’ plans. Attending receptions/parties hosted by firms/companies was very likely for 87.3% of respondents, somewhat likely for 7.1% and not likely for 5.6%. Similarly, having group meetings/lunches was very likely for 72.4%, somewhat likely for 20.3% and not likely for 7.3%.
Attending actual INTA activities is less popular, however. When asked how likely they were to attend INTA educational session, 23.4% said very likely, 28.2% said somewhat likely and 48.4% said not likely. Attending table topic sessions was very likely for just 16.9%, somewhat likely for 26.3% and not likely for 56.8%.
Attending INTA social events was very likely for 47.6%, somewhat likely for 32.3% and not likely for 20.2%. Attending committee meetings was very likely for 51.2%, somewhat likely for 14.0% and not likely for 34.7%. Visiting the exhibition hall was deemed very likely by 46.3% of respondents, somewhat likely by 36.6% and not likely by 17.1%.
Non-INTA training and sessions do not appear to be much of a pull. Only 5.9% of respondents said they were very likely to attend non-INTA training/sessions (for example, run by IP offices or exhibitors), 27.7% said somewhat likely and 66.4% said not likely.
Trademark professional’s priority claims
We quizzed respondents on the importance of the INTA Annual Meeting for six criteria. Talking to existing clients/contacts was deemed very important by 82.5% of respondents, quite important by 12.4% and not important by 5.1%.
Making new clients/contacts was very important for 68.1%, quite important for 26.5% and not important for 5.1%. Meeting with their own colleagues from other offices was very important for 31.6%, quite important for 22.1% and not important for 46.3%.
Using the INTA Annual Meeting for leaning about trademark developments in the respondents’ county/region was very important for 22.2%, quite important for 33.3% and not important for 44.4%. Interestingly, learning about trademark developments in other countries/regions was deemed more important. Some 24.3% of respondents said this was very important, 49.3% said quite important and 26.5% said it was not important.
We also asked respondents how a number of factors affect their views of an IP advisor/firm. It seems the more personalized, the better. An invitation to attend a private dinner was viewed very favorably by 51.1%, somewhat favorably by 28.1% and deemed to have no effect by 20.1%. Likewise, an invitation to schedule a one-on-one meeting was viewed favorably by 47.8% and somewhat favorably by 36.2%.
Other methods were deemed less likely to succeed. An invitation to attend a reception was viewed very favorably by 21.7% and somewhat favorably by 46.4%. An invitation to a meeting in a hotel suite was viewed very favorably by 18.1% and somewhat favorably by 36.2%. An impromptu meeting in or near the conference venue or hotel was viewed very favorably by 17.4% and somewhat favorably by 58.7%.
We also asked respondents whether they had ever done a number of actions as a result of attending a reception/meeting at INTA or other IP conferences. Some 55.8% of respondents said they has given new instruction to an existing IP advisor/firm, 54.4% said they had given instruction to a new advisor/firm, 40.1% said they had given additional (unplanned) work to an existing advisor/.firm, 36.7% said they had changed the IP advisor/firm used in a particular jurisdiction, 29.9% said they had renegotiated terms or fees with an existing IP advisor/firm and 19.7% said they had conducted a review of their legal panel for IP work.
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