How to create Facebook Timeline covers for your nonprofit (template included)

By now you’re probably aware that your Facebook profile has automatically been upgraded to the new timeline layout, which features a large cover at the very top.

Many organizations, like the Ocean Concervancy, are creating covers that supporters can use on their timeline (see the example Beth is using above).

Dave Connell, of the OC said they’re “offering up these covers is a way for our supporters to express their personal support for the ocean.”

Notice that there is no hard-sell pitch for donations (which could violate Facebook’s TOC). Rather, the OC covers are “lightly branded” beautiful photographs of various ocean life.

How to create a custom Facebook cover for your nonprofit

The easiest way to create a custom Facebook cover is to get a designer to create one using Photoshop.

Have your designer use the dimensions shown below, or download the Photoshop template here which includes three layers:

  • Background color – Which can be deleted or edited.
  • Profile picture box – This is intended to show you exactly where the user’s profile pic will appear on your cover. You want to know where the profile pic will be displayed so that you don’t block an important part of your Facebook cover. You can also use the profile pic to make your Facebook cover stand out.
  • Dimension layer – This layer is informational only and should be hidden or deleted.

How to create Facebook Timeline covers for your nonprofit (template included)

What if you don’t have Photoshop? If you don’t have access to a designer or Photoshop, you can use pixlr, which is an online photo editing website that allows you to upload and crop photos at any dimension.

How to upload your new cover into Facebook

How to create Facebook Timeline covers for your nonprofit (template included)

After you or your designer have created the images, create a Facebook Page photo album and then promote these covers via email, news feed and any other means.

Let’s see your Facebook Covers!

Post a link to your Facebook covers on the Nonprofit Facebook Guy wall.


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  1. John,
    These are great, super helpful to have the space for the profile picture included in the template.  Thanks for putting it together!

  2. I’ve noticed that facebook seems to downsize a picture, then stretch it to fill the cover slot. This results in a partially grainy/pixelated version of the original. Any ways around this?

  3. John, 
    Thanks for letting people know about what Ocean Conservancy is up to and for spreading the word on the Facebook covers. I hope this is something other non-profits adopt to help build support. I’m interested to see if Facebook has any objections to this tactic, but so far we’ve heard none. I definitely think this has to be done as a show of support, without a hard ask for donations to be effective. We even debated adding the “show your ocean love” bit at the lower-righthand corner, but figured others might want to know where to pick up a sweet cover! 

    Thanks as always for the great non-profit social media coverage! 

    Dave Connell, Ocean Conservancy Director of Digital Marketing

  4. John,

    Do you know if Timeline will become available for organisations or businesses any time soon? Noah – Ontario Nature

  5. Thanks alot for your free template and instructions.  It was very helpful to me for creating a timeline cover for my online ministry page on Facebook.  I think I was able to do a pretty good job on the first try even though I am a bit of a newbie with Photoshop.  I will post a link on your FB Wall. :)