Let’s face it—business cards are a hassle. They’re pricey, frustrating to keep up-to-date, and because of COVID19, they’re likely gathering dust in your desk drawer. As substitutes for physical business cards enter the market, there are two emerging trends: Near-Field Communication (NFC) business cards and digital business cards.
While similar in concept, there are a number of key differences that distinguish NFC and its counterpart, Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) cards from digital business cards. With NFC and RFID business cards, you still need to purchase and carry around with you a physical business card (or similar product that contains an NFC tag, like a pop socket), and, most distinctly, you must be in close proximity to the person with whom you’re sharing your card.
On the other hand, digital business card apps—like HiHello—are often free. You never have to worry about forgetting your business card at home because as long as you have your phone on you, you’ll be able to share your business card with anyone, anywhere. (Yes, you can share your HiHello digital business card with anyone, even if they don’t have the app!)
Still not sure if you should go with NFC or digital business cards? Here are 10 reasons why digital business cards are the smart choice over an NFC business card:
Have you ever attempted to give your business card to someone, only to find you left your card at home? While NFC business cards can be seen as hassle-free to some, the reality is that if you use an NFC or RFID card you’ll need to treat it as a normal business card and you’ll always need to have your card with you.
One of the biggest advantages of digital business cards is that as long as you have your phone (or Apple Watch) on you, you’ll always have access to your virtual card. (And let’s be honest—when was the last time you left home without your phone?)
NFC’s tap-and-go technology is a plus to some. While potentially more convenient than paper business cards for in-person networking, it poses an immediate challenge if you’re networking from a distance, like over a Zoom call.
Digital business cards are the future of networking in a post-COVID19 world. Whether you’re right next to someone or hundreds of miles away, with HiHello you can send your digital business card to anyone, even if they don’t have the app. You can share your business card using its unique QR code, email or text your card to someone, Airdrop your card, post the link to your card on your social channels, and more. You can also have Siri share your card, use the HiHello iOS widget (which places your QR code on your phone’s home screen), or send your card with the iMessage app. If you love the idea of “tap-and-go” you can even use HiHello with NFC technology, but more on that later.
There are hidden costs with NFC and RFID business cards. While purchasing an NFC business card may seem like a good deal upfront, you can actually purchase NFC tags for a fraction of the cost on sites like Amazon.
If you want to use NFC technology, the smart and affordable way to do it would be to purchase an NFC tag from Amazon (it’ll look like a sticker) and use HiHello’s “Write to NFC” feature to add the link to your business card to that tag. Once you put the tag on the back of your mobile phone (or anything that’s attached to your phone, like a phone case or pop socket) you’ll be able to share your digital business card with a tap.
If you want an NFC business card, keep in mind you won’t be able to use it immediately. There will be some turnaround time (from days to over a week) until your NFC or RFID business card arrives in the mail.
If you need a new business card immediately, go over to the App Store or Google Play Store and run a search for “digital business card” and download the app that looks best to you. (Not sure which one to choose? Obviously, we recommend HiHello, but don’t take our word for it—look at HiHello’s ratings and read the reviews!) If you download HiHello, you’ll be able to create a business card and start sharing your contact information within minutes.
Not all NFC business cards have apps, so you’ll be constrained to a 2x4 piece of paper or plastic.
One of the great things about digital business cards is that they’re completely customizable, and you can put as much information as you want on your card. You can add a video to your business card, include your pronouns, show various links to your business(es), and you’ll never run out of space.
In the past, when someone’s information changed they had to order an entirely new stack of business cards.
The information on your HiHello digital business card can be changed at any time. Earn a promotion? Open the HiHello app, edit your card, and add that new title! Get married and change your name? Edit your last name, and then add the Maiden Name field to your card. The HiHello iOS and Android apps allow you to make changes to your card, wherever you are and whenever you want.
There is an unequivocal environmental cost with every type of physical business card (albeit NFC or otherwise). Not only is there waste from materials used to make the physical card itself, but there’s also the impact that shipping has on the environment.
Digital business cards are environmentally friendly—there’s no additional waste being made from them and no unnecessary fossil fuel usage. Even enterprise companies are recognizing this, and are starting to move more towards digital business cards for all their employees.
Like any other small item, NFC business cards can easily be lost or misplaced. When that happens, you’ll have to purchase another one and wait for it to arrive. On the other hand, it’s impossible to misplace your digital business card—as long as you’re near a phone, tablet, computer, or your Apple Watch, you’ll always have access to your electronic card with HiHello.
As with physical business cards, the only benefit you get with an NFC business card is the actual card. On the other hand, if you download a digital business card app oftentimes you’ll have access to even more features than simply the card itself. On HiHello, you can use your mobile business card to create virtual backgrounds for Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet so you can easily share your card during any video call. If a lot of your business relies on email, you can utilize HiHello’s email signature feature, which uses your card to create a signature that links back to your electronic card.
Most business cards aren’t one-size-fits-all. You wouldn’t necessarily give your work card to a friend, and you wouldn’t give your personal card to someone at a networking event. HiHello lets you make up to four unique digital business cards (you can make even more with a premium plan) so you can have a card for each hat you wear. With NFC business card apps, if you want more than one business card you have to purchase (and carry around with you) additional NFC cards.
Up until recently, most companies gave their employees physical business cards. As more companies go remote in light of the coronavirus pandemic, the concept of a digital business card is gaining in popularity. Instead of purchasing physical business cards or an NFC card for each employee, you can sign up for an enterprise digital business card platform like HiHello Business and set up your entire team with virtual cards. You’ll never need to re-order new cards when someone’s title changes, you can see all of the contacts your team is making, and you receive access to all of the exciting networking features mentioned above.
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