Target Your Audience

Who can help you achieve what you want?

Trying to reach everyone is a recipe for failure. Focusing your efforts on those who can help you reach your goal saves time, energy and resources—and is more likely to be successful.

In most cases, the focus of your advocacy efforts will be key decision-makers—university or school administrators, Board of Education members, the city council or county commission, state and federal legislators and those who wield influence with these groups—the media, other officials (e.g., the mayor, school superintendent), community/school/campus leaders, and voters.

In general, you will want to target those who are most likely to be supportive. For example, if your library enjoys strong support among senior citizens, they may be a key audience for a ballot initiative on funding. Teachers and parents are key to winning support for bigger school library budgets. Alumni may be a key audience for college and university libraries. Be sure to start with your internal audiences.

Potential target audiences:


  • Staff
  • Trustees
  • Volunteers
  •  Friends


  • Library users
  • Donors and potential donors
  • Elected officials
  • Journalists
  • Other librarians
  • School board members
  • Civic/neighborhood associations
  • College students/alumni
  • Professional associations
  • Teachers/school administrators
  • School children
  • Faculty/administrators
  • Seniors
  • Business community

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