With escalated levels of abuse and conflicting priorities, every brand protection team has been challenged in the past year. Increasingly we’ve seen our client base and their outside counsel working in unprecedented ways to make the most of their brand protection investment and delivering returns. The result? More efficient spend, better protection, and a safer environment for the brand’s customers.

This is the first in a series of  short anonymized case studies that show how Appdetex has worked with outside counsel to fight abuse and deliver value to brands and their management. 

The problem: Prioritization of Abuse and Remediation

The solution: Situation Analysis, Strategy Development and Appdetex TracerTM

Situation Analysis

When this new client began their engagement with Appdetex, the in-house team and outside counsel reported how they experienced difficulty in the past in determining which instances of abuse to address first. All abuse looked similar. 

As a result, the team often took a day-to-day whack-a-mole strategy in addressing abuse, including ad-hoc issues escalated by their exec and sales team. They didn’t see a return on investment from their efforts with this methodology. The team needed a comprehensive view of the problem.

To address the issue, the Appdetex team worked with the brand and their outside counsel to analyze the situation more thoroughly. The extended team met and assessed the scope of abuse, including a discussion of how counterfeiters impacted revenue, customer service, and the brand protection organization. Together the extended team evaluated which product lines were most affected, established the tactics used by bad actors, and determined which of these malicious actors were most effective at disrupting commerce. Using the Appdetex platform, the extended brand protection team assembled data from scans of online marketplaces, domain names, websites, social media, and advertising platforms. 

The team unwound which keywords, types of content, pricing, and website promotions these bad actors were using to attract buyers and sell them counterfeit goods. They established a baseline for the quantity of abuse and which abuse was related to other abuse. By collecting data cross-functionally from their support organization, their resellers, and other stakeholders, they created a benchmark from which to measure their progress against the problem.

Strategy

Biased towards positive impact, the extended brand protection team prioritized the types of abuse based on business impact.  Using this hierarchy, they adopted strategies to mitigate each type of abuse and identified the most efficient and effective way to stop it. 

The team adopted a multi-pronged approach to enforcement.  They decided to use platform notices and other automated means for the bulk of abuse by individual bad actors in social, on marketplaces, and in domain names.  Outside counsel and the internal brand protection team concentrated on identifying organized bad actors who registered domain names in bulk or who operated networks of abuse. 

They used Appdetex TracerTM reporting to expedite more problematic matters to outside counsel who could send more impactful cease and desist notices, file UDRPs or collect more evidence for lawsuits, if necessary. In addition, the brand protection team developed a protocol to alert the brand’s Internal sales channel resources when their partners were working outside of the brand’s terms and conditions. 

The team documented all of the criteria for measuring abuse, their protocols and tools in a playbook that was shared among all members of the extended brand protection team.

Outcome

With a newfound alignment and focus, the extended brand protection team - outside counsel, vendors, and internal stakeholders - were able to concentrate on the abuse issues that were most problematic and damaging. With a clear definition of roles and responsibilities, along with playbooks for responses and mitigation, the team members could work quickly and accurately. 

Without increasing budget, outside counsel was able to handle nearly twice as many escalated matters, which dramatically increased the satisfaction of the brand while stopping some of the worst malicious actors. 

The overall increase in efficiency allowed the brand to abate more abuse more expediently. With metrics identified in the initial stage of the project, the team was able to measure their success and provide useful reporting to management and executive levels at the brand. 

To find out how Appdetex can help your brand protection team, speak to one of our brand protection experts

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