From the hawkers selling sweets at the traffic lights to the vendors manning their fresh fruit stands on busy street corners to the spaza shop owners to the artist selling beautiful handmade jewellery at the beachfront market. These informal traders do so much for their families and communities. They create employment opportunities and provide essential goods and services in remote areas of South Africa. Yet they are still overlooked, dismissed and downtrodden. This is where the South African Informal Traders Alliance (SAITA) comes in.
SAITA is a non-governmental organisation for all informal traders, micro-business owners and traders’ organisations in South Africa. As the definitive voice for informal trade in the country, they fight for the rights of informal workers, represent them in meetings with other stakeholders and give them the tools they need to grow their enterprises.
Having helped to establish their social media presence in 2020, we now curate both their Facebook and Twitter accounts. To have their social media reflect their status as the voice of the sector, we share a combination of structured, pre-approved content, as well as breaking news and PR coverage. On Facebook, we focus on growing their community, connecting with potential new members and highlighting those who are already part of the organisation. The greater focus on Twitter is lobbying, specifically government departments and officials, as well as networking with other trader organisations.
With so many different target audiences to tap into, it’s been an exciting challenge to determine what works on each specific platform and hone the ability to communicate SAITA’s messages to each stakeholder group through the voice of a trader.