For those unfamiliar with these, they are platforms where you can consolidate all kinds of links in one place like your social media accounts, websites, etc.
With platforms like those, one could say that business cards have been pushed further towards the realm of obscurity, especially since we also had the digitisation of business cards a while ago.
However, these platforms are only convenient for connecting virtually, so figuring that there should be something like this for real-life exchanges, Kelvin Ong and Vinay Rajan co-founded T-A-G.
Concerns For The Environment
According to Adobe, 88% of business cards that get handed out are thrown away in less than a week, mostly because people do not need the service of the person handing out the business card.
Though I’ve never thrown away any business cards, I can understand why people do because most of the business cards I’ve received were given to me without my asking for them.
“There’s also the issue of limited information you can put in business cards plus the high cost of reprinting, which impacts the environment negatively,” Kelvin told Vulcan Post.
Hence, the duo started T-A-G in December 2020 to solve the issue through a tap-and-go concept, where a user can transfer all their contact details like their phone number, WhatsApp, email, company address, etc. straight to the receiver’s phone at physical meetings.
Ditching Business Cards For Good
As mentioned, while this concept is similar to platforms like Linktree and Carrd, the difference is that you don’t have to go through the process of asking for their social links and can just tap on their phones to send over the details in person.
“T-A-G uses the NFC technology (Near Field Communication) which is the same technology behind Touch ‘n Go cards, EZLink cards, Samsung Pay, and Apple Pay. The receiver also does not need to download an app to receive the contact card,” Kelvin explained.
For their users, all they have to do is get the T-A-G pin and fill in their contact information and social media platforms on the app.
Even if they were the only one at an event with the T-A-G pin and app then, everyone else they meet would still be able to receive their details with a tap.
Another key difference between their technology and consolidated platforms like Linktree and Carrd is that you can choose which apps or contact details you want to share with the person.
Say if I were to meet someone in person and they asked for my social media, I could just give them the accounts I want them to have like LinkedIn or Instagram, and exclude more private contact details like my phone number or Snapchat.
Besides business cards though, their technology can be used for getting the WiFi, menu, or even tracking someone’s lost dog.
While we have apps with QR codes for networking purposes already, the advantage of this technology is that you don’t have to open a scanner app or camera for it. All you have to do is just tap your phone on the pin.
As for missing dogs, say if you were to see one with a T-A-G pin on their collar, you can just tap your phone on the pin to reveal the owner’s details for the return.
Business Cards Are Cheaper, But Are They Worth It?
The price for T-A-G pins ranges from RM88 to RM108, though they’re currently on a 30% sale at RM61.60 to RM75.60. The more colourful the design, the more expensive the pin.
Besides plain colours, their other designs include SEA flags like Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia, durian, holographic-looking pin, and more.
Depending on the merchant you go to for business cards printing, on the other hand, the price can be around RM15 to over RM30 for 100 pieces.
But Kelvin shares that unlike business cards, their pin is waterproof and durable, and takes away the hassle of having to reprint once you run out of business cards or need to edit some details instantly.
“Businesses can also customise their company’s logo onto the pin, which will potentially increase their brand visibility wherever their staff go and use their phone,” he added.
Seeing Opportunity In The Pandemic
Now, choosing to introduce this product during the pandemic, when most people are staying at home, is quite the contrary of their business since they require in-person tapping.
However, Kelvin explained, “The T-A-G function isn’t only limited to sharing contacts and social profiles in-person, as it can also be used by F&B businesses, hotels, resorts, spa, and cafés as a replacement for QR codes, which are limited to opening a single digital menu.”
With their pin, customers can open menus, get free WiFi, access their social media pages, and review sites all in one.
Within their first month of launching, Kelvin said they already have 150 active users and have sold hundreds of T-A-G pins.
“Our current challenge is that T-A-G it is a blue ocean product, and so it needs more product awareness,” Kelvin shared.
Dictionary Time: A blue ocean strategy refers to a market where the product has little to no competition at all.
“People have never seen such a product before, hence we need more time and effort to educate the market on what benefits T-A-G could bring to their businesses and their daily life,” he shared with Vulcan Post.
Featured Image Credit: Kelvin Ong and Vinay Rajan, co-founders of T-A-G