Burt’s Bees ran an ads in Instagram Stories campaign to raise awareness about the release of its Flavor Crystals lip balms, achieving a 22-point lift in ad recall.

Natural ingredients from the beginning

In the 1980s, Maine beekeeper Burt Shavitz and artist Roxanne Quimbly teamed up to sell homemade honey and beeswax candles at local craft fairs, and Burt’s Bees was born. From those humble beginnings to today’s iconic lip balms, its ingredients have always been simple and natural.


lift in ad recall


lift in product awareness


lift in purchase intent

8.5 million

people reached

Our brand has a strong following on Instagram and we were excited to be an early adopter of Instagram Stories in our brand engagement mix. This study gives us the confidence that our audience responds to this content in this medium and we will continue to use in the future.
Raising awareness with the right audience

Burt’s Bees wanted to promote the rollout of its newly reformulated Flavor Crystals lip balms—made with 100% real fruit juice crystals and sweet fruit flavors—to raise product awareness among a younger target audience.

Memorable Stories make a difference

To support the Flavor Crystals product launch, Burt’s Bees chose ads in Instagram Stories.

The company worked with agencies AKQA and McGarryBowen to develop four photo ads for its month-long campaign—an ad for each of the three flavors, plus one ad showcasing all the flavors at once. It then collaborated with Facebook to revise and optimize the ad creative and branding to ensure it would perform well in Instagram Stories.

The full-screen vertical photo ads featured colorful stylized product shots of each new lip balm flavor, with messaging about the real fruit juice crystals and a call-to-action button to “Shop Now” that linked to the product page. Each of the four ads ran for one week before being rotated out for the next.

A Facebook brand lift study was conducted with the following polling methodology: displaying ads to people on Facebook; generating randomized control groups; polling the control and exposed groups; and then analyzing results to measure lift in key brand metrics.

The ads in Instagram Stories campaign blew through all of the benchmarks, including reaching 63% of its intended target audience of US females aged 13–24. Between July 10–August 7, 2017, the campaign made gains in all key metrics, including:

  • 22-point lift in ad recall

  • 8-point lift in product awareness

  • 8-point lift in purchase intent

  • 8.5 million people reached