Expression Experience | Facebook

Team: Product Designer (my role), UX Researcher, Content Strategist, Creative Director, Creative Producer, 4 Illustrators/Animators, Product Manager, Data Scientist, Engineering Manager, 2 Engineers, Product Marketing Manager.



The Expression Experience was created by the Community Moments team - which celebrates the holidays and meaningful moments in your community (i.e. “Happy New Year”, “Happy Thanksgiving”). This celebration is experienced through NewsFeed units that appear at the top of a person’s feed during these recognized days.

People Problem: People expressed a desire to connect more deeply with friends and family during these Moments, especially when spread across the globe.

Prior to this project, the team had launched a Standard Unit for every recognized Moment. While this unit was able to be “shared” through a person’s timeline or Messenger, people were unable to customize any further.

As a response, our team created the Expression Experience. Through the camera, personal words, and bespoke cards - this experience allows people to more intimately celebrate these Moments together, whether near or far.

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Research was closely partnered with in order to correctly address people’s product needs. The sessions were divided into two primary categories: people needs and expectations (prior to design), and product experience (throughout the iterative design process).

Here are a few of the key insights that we discovered:

  1. Relationships

Holidays and widely-recognized moments are ways that people keep up with friends and family. People desired a tool that would allow them to do this through a variety of ways.


2. Creation Choices

Give people ways a spectrum of ways to be creative. People expressed that sometimes they know exactly what to say for a personal message, and other times they prefer ready-made options.


3. Relevance

People mentioned that, with any product experience given, it would be necessary to be culturally conscious and relevant. There should be no assumptions made, so that the most authentic experience was possible.


Note: Additional rounds of research were done for product-specific experiences and/or testing (i.e. video content from Facebook, overall experience, etc.) so that we could quickly iterate and address usability concerns.




The Expression Experience was composed of three primary tools: camera, personal words, and bespoke cards. This was done in order to provide choices, while avoiding decision paralysis for this lightweight celebration experience. People were able to share through both broadcast sharing on NewsFeed, and private sharing through Messenger. When people posted these Expression Experiences on their NewsFeed, an entry point to the experience was attached and enabled - so that more people were aware of/able to participate in this celebration.




The Expression Experience enables people to more intimately and meaningfully share in a moment together. Through extensive user testing and talking with teams across Facebook, we identified the experiences that would be both the most desired and most used for sharing through this experience:

  1. Camera: Photos are a unique, personal way to celebrate a moment. This experience involved close collaboration with the Camera team, in order to create holiday-specific camera filters.

  2. Personal Words: Relevant text backgrounds were created and included in the experience. People were able to write personal messages of celebration to share with their friends.

  3. Bespoke Cards: These holiday-specific cards could be: A) Still or animated artwork, and B) Creative or words (i.e. Happy International Women’s Day).


 Key Details

Design | Consistency & Alignment

As a company and wholistic product, Facebook maintains product consistency through design patterns and language. Throughout the process of creating this unit, the team closely collaborated with Facebook’s central design team in order to ensure that the new Expression Experience aligned with the current system.

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MVP and V1

  1. The MVP design included a single entry point to one of the experiences (camera, personal works, bespoke cards). Dependent on the holiday, the most relevant experience was selected.

  2. V1 incorporated all of the experiences into the unit.

Both of these designs were ultimately added to our team’s product library.

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Prior to launching the experience, the team closely collaborated in order to collectively determine the launch countries and dates that would be suitable for this.

Team Product Library

Both the single experience (MVP) and multiple experiences (V1) were added to the team’s product library.

  1. On a people level: dependent on the Moment being recognized, a single experience may be more effective than all - and vice versa.

  2. On a team level: when a single entry point was determined to be most impactful, this also allowed the team to scale and be inclusive of more Moment experiences (with shorter creative art timelines).

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Launch Dates

As a team, we outlined principles and guidelines in order to determine whether or not a Moment “qualified” for this Expression Experience. This was done in order to be respectful of cultures and specific details that may apply to recognized days.

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Chelsea Wells | Design Portfolio