"Should you file copyright for your online videos, webinar presentations, email newsletter articles, blogs, SEO-ed Web pages, podcasts, white papers ... and the rest of the content your marketing department produces?" asks Anne Holland on the Marketing Sherpa blog. The answer, she says, is yes and no.

If your marketing materials are basically the intellectual property you sell—meaning, you sell research or data as either a primary product or a value-added benefit—then you should consider copyrighting that material, Holland says. This way, you can shut down a competitor that purloins your IP and presents it as their own.

The trade-off, of course, is that it costs between $35 and $75 to file each copyright application, and it takes up valuable time.

As a stopgap measure, Holland suggests you put a copyright line ("© 2008, Company name Inc.") on the PowerPoint slides you produce. She also recommends protecting brochures, images of products or facilities, landing pages on your website, and podcasts. Be sure, she says, to include it inside the border of a slide, so that it is not easily cut off or removed if the page is reproduced.