SharePoint AD group does not show up in Audience Targeting

SharePoint audience group does not show up in Audience Targeting but you can easily search for that in people picker and provide access in SharePoint site.

First of all, there is difference between People Picker control and Audience picker control used in audience targeting a webpart. People picker control is shown in the image below.People picker

In layman’s terms, People picker queries Domain Controller directly when you search for a user or AD group. It can query the Active Directory directly.

Whereas Audience picker queries the User Database created by User Profile Service running in SharePoint. Audience Targeting93

Now it makes sense that, people picker was able to pick a newly created AD group but Audience picker cannot find that group unless an Incremental/Full sync is performed.

Some other groups might also be missing in Audience picker. It all comes down to what OU’s you pick up while configuring User profile synchronization service in SharePoint.

Resolution: If you cannot find your newly created Active Directory group in Audience picker while trying to set up audience targeting for a web part,

1. Make sure atleast one user is added to that AD group
2. Perform an incremental/Full profile synchronization

AD group will show up in Audience picker after a user profile synchronization.