02/05/2011 02:38 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

What's in a Name? Ask Sarah

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet but, apparently, (and perhaps soon legally) Sarah Palin and Bristol Palin have no substitutes. Both mom and daughter have applied for trademark protection for their respective names. Sadly, my iPad does not have the symbol for registered trademark, which is now causing me anxiety as I type their names.

The idea of trademarking the Palin name is puzzling but fascinating. Imagine, for example, the value of a DVD box set of Official Bristol Palin branded inspirational speeches. The soon-to-be college student reportedly already commands an unimaginable $15,000 to $30,000 per live appearance. Single motherhood never paid so well. (I was raised by a single mom until I was seven. Too bad she didn't think about this!) Oh yes, Bristol Palin is also a dancer. I can envision a line of BP endorsed tap shoes and sequined outfits coming to Macy's any day.

Her mom, of course, is a powerful political figure, rallying millions of supporters and raising millions of dollars for her PAC. Plus, she is a best selling author, speaker and Discover Channel's successful reality star. One can only imagine Sarah Palin hunting gear surfacing soon at Bass Pro Shops nationwide. If she runs for president, I wonder if she will trademark slogans, too. After all, how many candidates do we really want uttering, "You betcha'."

Still, you have to hand it to Sarah (am I allowed to legally refer to her using only her first name?) In two years she has made the word Palin a valuable and powerful brand. Regardless of whether you agree with her political views or find her malaprops endearing or maddening, her marketing skills are brilliant. Let's just hope this doesn't inspire the Kardashians.

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