To increase brand awareness and purchase intent over the winter holiday season, Josh Cellars ran a mix of Instagram and Facebook ad formats and placements, and saw an 11.5-point lift in ad recall.

Classic California wines

Joseph Carr founded Josh Cellars in 2007 in honor of his dad, Josh, with the release of one varietal, a cabernet sauvignon. Today, the brand features a diverse portfolio of wines sourced from across California’s winegrowing regions, all made to exacting standards.


lift in ad recall


lift in brand awareness


lift in those “very likely” to purchase

Instagram and Facebook provide efficient environments for reaching our target consumers at scale. They are an integral part of our marketing mix because we’re able to maintain and grow our brand awareness with the right audience throughout the year, and heavy-up during our key holiday selling periods.
Reaching more holiday shoppers

Josh Cellars wanted to increase awareness of its new Prosecco sparkling wine over the winter holiday season, as well as position the Josh Cellars brand as the perfect wine for gifting.

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Stories for the holidays

Prior to building its holiday ad campaign, Josh Cellar’s internal brand team partnered with a creative agency to come up with a number of concepts. The teams decided to run ads on Instagram and Facebook, so they attended a working session with Facebook Creative Shop on building ad creative specifically for mobile viewing.

The teams followed Facebook Creative Shop’s recommendations for developing content and creative variations to match how different people look at ads and engage with them across the Facebook family of apps. They also learned about unique ad placements and effects that can captivate viewers―such as the immersive Stories placement and short videos with 3D-like effects.

The teams adhered to best practices, such as ensuring that ad creative was designed to adapt to each placement, showcased the product within the first two seconds, kept videos under fifteen seconds and used text overlays that ensure the action is still understandable with the sound off.

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Stories placement: Because people typically hold their phones vertically, the teams built video ads specifically for the full-screen Stories environment to capture attention and connect with viewers. The creative showed people exchanging bottles of Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon and Prosecco, along with the messaging “Some Gifts Mean More When Shared” to illustrate that Josh Cellars wines were perfect gifts for the holidays.

3D-like effects: The teams built a video ad showing a table festively decorated with sparkly lights and ornaments, plus a bottle of Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon. A hand picked up the bottle and, using a 3D effect, unexpectedly “broke out” of the ad frame to show a closeup view of the bottle’s label. Using the message “Give Gratitude. Give Josh,” this ad ran in Instagram feed, Instagram Explore and Facebook News Feed.

Josh Cellars showed the ads to a broad audience of US adults aged 25–54, including those with an interest in wine, and it used campaign budget optimization to allow Facebook’s algorithm to automatically distribute the budget across the best-performing ad sets in real time. Josh Cellars determined the results of this November 5–December 31, 2019 holiday campaign using a Facebook brand lift study, which revealed:

  • 11.5-point lift in ad recall

  • 6.1-point lift in brand awareness

  • 4.2-point lift in those “very likely” to purchase

We plan to continue scaling our Facebook and Instagram investment year over year, as we’ve learned from marketing mix analysis that it delivers a strong return on investment while simultaneously building meaning and uniqueness with our target consumers.