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Set target audiences for a Google service

Apply, remove, or reorder target audiences
This feature is currently available for the Google Drive and Docs and Google Chat services.

Supported editions for this feature: (Drive, Docs, & Chat) Business Plus; Enterprise Standard and Enterprise Plus; Education Standard and Education Plus; Enterprise Essentials and Enterprise Essentials Plus. (Drive & Docs only) Business Standard; Nonprofits; G Suite Business.  Compare your edition

As an administrator, you can:

  • Apply target audiences to a Google service, to recommend them as sharing options for all or specific users. 
  • Set the default target audience for users. 
  • Change the order in which target audiences appear for users.
  • Remove target audiences to stop recommending them to users.

At least one target audience needs to be applied to a Google service. By default, a predefined audience that includes all users in your organization is applied to any services that have target audience settings. You can use the predefined audience or replace it with another audience you created.

Before you begin

Review important information about applying a target audience
  • You can apply up to 5 target audiences to a Google service for all or specific users.
  • To apply target audiences to service, you need to create a policy for an organizational unit or configuration group. You can't apply target audiences directly to a user's account.

    Important: For Chat discoverable spaces, you can create a target audiences policy only for the top-level organizational unit. This policy will apply to all child organizational units.

  • You can set the default—or primary—target audience, which appears first in a user's list of sharing recommendations. You can also set the order the other audiences appear in the list.
  • When you apply a target audience to a service, it appears in a user's sharing settings for that service.

If you haven't yet created target audiences to apply to a Google service, go to Create a target audience.

Review important information about removing a target audience

If you remove a target audience:

  • It's no longer available in users' sharing settings for the service for any items (such as documents or Chat discoverable spaces), except in items that are currently shared with that audience.
  • The default sharing option in users' sharing settings becomes Restricted—owners must add people they want to share the item with until they choose another target audience.
  • For Drive, members of the deleted target audience can still access any items previously shared with them. To prevent access to a shared item, you'll need to either remove members from the audience or delete the audience.
  • For Chat discoverable spaces, only members who previously joined a space can continue to access it. These members can continue to access the space even if the removed target audience is deleted.

After you remove a target audience from a service, you can permanently Delete a target audience.

Set target audiences for a Google service

To set target audiences for a Google service, you can go either directly to the sharing settings for that service or to your Target audiences list.

Alternatively, you can start setting target audiences from your Target audiences list:

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in

  2. In the Admin console, go to Menu and then Directoryand thenTarget audiences.
  3. In the Target audiences list, click the name of the target audience you want to apply to or remove from a Google service.
  4. At the upper-right corner of the page, click Apply to Google service. You'll be taken to the sharing settings for the service.

    Requires having the Service Settings administrator privilege.

  5. Next steps: Follow the instructions below for the service you want to set target audiences for.

    Set target audiences for Google Drive and Docs

    For details about setting target audiences for Google Drive and Docs, go to Set general access options for file sharing in Drive.

    Set target audiences for Google Chat

    For details about setting target audiences for Google Chat discoverable spaces, see Google Chat sharing settings.

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