Lyft Works With P&G To Convince Riders They're Getting Into A Clean Machine

Everyone’s gotten germ-conscious these days, which has certainly benefited big soapmaker Procter & Gamble. On Thursday it announced a partnership with Lyft to provide cleaning and disinfection products for drivers as part of the rideshare company’s health and safety program.

A new “clean ride guide”, developed by the University of Tennessee’s Health Science Center and the P&G Professional unit that serves Lyft’s institutional users, recommends drivers use P&G’s Spic and Span Disinfecting All Purpose Spray and the company’s relatively new Microban 24 Professional.

The latter product, launched in late February, disinfects surfaces — and, P&G claims, keeps them safe for 24 hours even if they’re touched again and again. It became a hot seller in March, even before there was advertising to promote it, as the pandemic set in and groceries’ cleaning supply shelves were quickly depleted.

“Drivers continue to use Lyft as a flexible earning opportunity, and we’re committed to equipping them with the information they need to guard against COVID-19,” said Angie Westbrock, vice president of global operations and head of Lyft’s COVID-19 Response Task Force.

“We are constantly looking for ways to build upon our Health Safety Program to make the Lyft community feel as safe and comfortable as possible,” she said in a statement.

Lyft and rival Uber ridership plummeted when the pandemic took hold, and declined by as much as 75% through June, compared to a year ago.

Both companies require drivers and passengers to wear masks. Lyft has a website that addresses concerns of drivers and passengers, and assures that Lyft’s recommendations meet CDC guidelines. It also started a store for drivers to stock up on cleaning and hygiene products, which it said it was offering at wholesale prices.

In May, Uber said it was spending $50 million to acquire cleaning products and protective devices for drivers, and also said it had distributed 800,000 packages of disinfectant wipes, and bottles of hand sanitizers and disinfectant sprays. It has partnerships with Unilever, Dettol and Clorox and a website store that offers those products at wholesale prices

Those partnerships join other similar marketing efforts. In July, P&G made a deal with Dunkin’ Brands and Denny’s restaurants to use Spic and Span and Dawn counter scrubs.

Patrons can make the connection that if it’s good enough for a chain with loads of traffic, those products would be good at home,too.

Lysol has a deal with Hilton Hotels to make it clear to guests that its products are used to keep their rooms safe.

Those tie-ins seem there for the taking. Virtually every major hotel chain has a showy name for its new COVID-19 cleaning and safety plans. During the summer, P&G launched CleanPLUS Experience, a program that provides hotels and restaurants with digital and printed materials to show off to guests, highlighting the professional branded version of products used there.

P&G surveyed 850 frequent business and leisure travelers and 974 diners earlier this year. Those surveys said 70% of travelers and 58% of diners would choose to do business with a hotel or restaurant if they knew it was using cleaning products “they personally knew and trusted.”

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