How B&Bs must take advantage of the purchasing power of the ‘grey market'

Expert insight from former Institute of Hospitality CEO Peter Ducker and member of P&G Professional's Expert Advisory Council

We have an ageing population - the over-55s are the ones who have benefitted from house price inflation and many are of the last generation to enjoy defined benefit pension schemes. As a result, this generation has the highest spending power. The truth of the matter for B&B businesses is that the "grey market" is a vital area to target, post-pandemic more so than ever.

Be that as it may, apprehension about travelling abroad is not going away anytime soon. Today you need to make health and wellbeing a priority and key part of your marketing message. The most critical question people ask themselves is: "will I be safe there?". Kantar research cites that the over-55s are the most concerned about cleanliness, and so B&Bs up and down the country need to shout from the rooftops about their fantastic cleaning and hygiene practices, to help attract this lucrative proportion of the market.

Consider physically and digitally displaying the CleanPLUS Experience sticker from P&G Professional as a gold standard in hygiene.

With customers looking for superlative health and hygiene standards so that they feel safe when staying away from home, displaying this signage will convey to them that your establishment has been cleaned to the highest levels using known and trusted brands such as Flash Professional, Fairy Professional and Ariel Professional.

We know that many "greys" have disposable income and are deeply embedded in the experience economy. They are seasoned travellers and leisure seekers but are currently "grounded". Surely this combination is catnip for B&Bs.

So how can you capture your share of this valuable market? Build your online reputation. Stimulate engagement with early bird offers. Offer clients on your database special offers to come and stay at your establishment again. Find novel ways to reach your customers.

Be innovative and think outside the box. Now is not the time to sit back and wait for the phone to ring - there is a market out there, so go for it.

To find out more about the CleanPLUS Experience - from P&G Professional's trusted household name brands Fairy Professional, Flash Professional and Ariel Professional - including applying for complementary materials and signage, call 0800 716 854 or visit