Facebook just got a lot more friendly for nonprofits with the announcement of Public Profile Pages. This means nonprofits now be able to "share all types of content with an unlimited number of users" and Facebook users will be able to comment on the posted content, just as they would on the personal profile page of any Facebook friend.
It's a giant step toward true two-way communication for nonprofit organizations trying to establish a presence on Facebook. Have a look at the new and improved NonProfit Organizations on Facebook to see what this change looks like in practice.
Effectively, Public Profile Pages give nonprofit organizations,
businesses, celebrities and other public figures
and groups the same full functionality for social networking that's been enjoyed by individual (non-public)
Facebook members – something long requested by nonprofit groups frustrated in their attempts to interact with their supporters on Facebook, rather than simply "broadcast" to them.
Here is how Facebook's press release, 4 March 2009, explains this significant change in policy for the social network:
Evolving to Profiles for Everyone and Everything on Facebook
is moving towards offering everyone and everything on the site the same
experience as with profiles – personal web pages that currently
represent each of the more than 175 million users on Facebook. In the
next week, all administrators of Facebook Pages will have the
opportunity to make changes to the new design and can publish the
updated design for all users to see whenever they choose. On March
11th, these Pages will automatically change to the new profile design.
profiles will be familiar to all Facebook users because they have the
same look and function as the current profiles, including these popular
Wall – The Wall displays the most recent and relevant
information on a profile. The Wall is a collection of what a celebrity
or public entity shares as well as what those connected to them are
sharing. People can now easily comment on the content posted.
– Just as a user can add content such as status updates, photos, and
videos to any of their connections’ profiles, the Publisher provides a
simple interface for sharing content.
Tabs and Applications – Celebrities and public entities choose the default Tab that all users
see when they land on their profile. Some applications that a celebrity
or public entity has added to their profile are featured on the Boxes
News Feed – Users will receive updates in
News Feed from public profiles just like how they receive updates from
their friends and family. Every time users visit Facebook, they’ll see
the latest content from their friends, celebrities, and others they
Check out http://www.facebook.com/FacebookPages for more information, and links to Facebook's best practices guides – there's one specifically for Communities (non-profit organizations, universities, religious organizations, etc.) – and step-by-step instructions to get started.