Today is Arbor Day. I wanted to promote the the National Arbor Day’s Facebook Page on the Nonprofit Organizations Facebook Page. So, I searched Facebook for “Arbor Day” and three Pages came up:

1) Arbor Day :: 79 Likes:

2) National Arbor Day Foundation :: 99 Likes:

3) Arbor Day :: 2 Likes:

My first thought: Hmmm… the logo is weird on all the Pages. And Wikipedia Tabs? What? Oh… so this is what a Community Page looks like.

My second thought: Strange… I know the National Arbor Day Foundation has an Twitter profile (@ArborDay), but not a Facebook Page? That didn’t seem likely, so I went to Google to search “Arbor Day Facebook”. And yes, in fact they do an have an official Page with 4,385 Likes:

It just doesn’t come up in the Top 3 Search Results. You have to click “See More Results for arbor day” and then “Pages” on the left to find the Official Page:

Even if you search for “Arbor Day Foundation” still only the Community Page comes up in the Top Results (that pop-down), not the Official Page started, promoted and maintained by National Arbor Day Foundation. The same thing happened with Big Brothers, Big Sisters: [1,752 Likes]
[10,973 Likes] [Official Page]

And WaterAid: [6 Likes] [4,793] [Official Page]

All of those nonprofits have “Official Pages” with large numbers of “Likes”, yet they didn’t come up in the Top 3 Search Results. The much less popular, out-of-their control Community Pages did.

For other nonprofits that I currently Like or have Liked in the past, their Official Pages show up in the Top Search Results (in this case it expands to 6), but so do Community Pages:

At the top of the results: [Official]

Then these Community Page for the Nature Conservancy follow (all created by Facebook):

So nonprofits, it looks like you have some competition on Facebook. That competition would be… Facebook. I suggest all of you do a search on Facebook (from someone else’s computer who does not “Like” your organization’s Official Page and never has) to find out if you have a Community Page that you were not aware of, and then stay tuned for updates on whether there’s anything you can do about it. Filling out the Authentification Form may help, but at this point no one is really sure. Will keep you posted. In the meantime, please also see:

Why Facebook Community Page could be bad news for brands

The Problem With Community Pages

Facebook Hates Your Brand

Related Links:
Four Reasons Why Nonprofits Should Reconsider Facebook
ATTN Nonprofits: Do Not Create Community Pages!