Discovery Networks

TLC Next Great Presenter Search

In June 2015, we announced the launch of the TLC Next Great Presenter (TLC NGP) competition aimed to uncover a hidden talent and TLC Entertainment host, broaden awareness of the channel and position TLC as a brand which is committed to its African audience.

We were tasked to create mass awareness of the TLC NGP search to drive quality entries for the competition across the continent. Through this campaign, we were also tasked to redefine Africa as a key market for parent company, Discovery Networks.

For the first time ever, the global company had set out to execute a presenter search across Africa, which meant FH had to establish a new approach and best practices for executing a campaign of this scale.


The Launch:

The Good Food & Wine show was used to announce the campaign. A social media competition ran where viewers won tickets to attend. We utilised TLC’s Buddy Valastro from the popular show Cake Boss to invite viewers to join the likes of him and Oprah as a presenter on TLC. 22 media attended the event had a recording which booth allowed consumers to film an audition on the spot. FH also posted live social media updates.

Call for entry: We pursued an aggressive media relations campaign by issuing weekly press content including: updates, tips for auditions, judging criteria and reminders regarding competition closing dates. Promo videos were also posted on TLC’s social media channels.

Bootcamp: We issued press content announcing the Top 12 contestants and the judges and secured media interviews in each of the finalists regions. Messaging documents developed and a theory and practical media training session was held with the Top 12 finalists to prepare for interviews. Video diaries were also filmed and uploaded to the NGP website and social media platforms to allow fans to engage. FH also provided live social media coverage.

Top 3 rallying for votes: We aligned with Multichoice in Namibia, Botswana and South Africa to rollout in-market media engagements including: interviews, media breakfasts and meet-and-greets. This ensured that FH remained neutral and the Top 3 received an equal advantage. A voter competition ran on social media with 10 winners receiving gift bags. The ultimate winner received a Club Med sponsored holiday secured by FH.

The Winners Announcement: The Discovery Networks Upfront event was utilized to announce the winner of the competition. 32 media attended the event to witness the unveiling of the winner. Media interviewed the winner immediately after the live reveal. We also provided live social media coverage of the event.

TLC Top 10: Winner, David Mbeha conducted a fan meet-and-greet session. FH also facilitated a live social media chat with fans during the premiere of the show. A press release and personal media alerts were issued to remind journalists regarding the premiere of the show.

winner announcement


We garnered 223 pieces of on-message coverage. 69% of the total coverage received appeared in publications based outside South Africa.

Over 1500 auditions were received from across the continent including popular TV personalities. Due to the high quality of entries, Discovery Networks extended the Top 10 to a Top 12.

TLC received over 60 000 combined votes for the Top 3 finalists.

R3.5 million AVE (1:1) generated.

38 one-on-one media interviews were conducted with the Top 12 and judges.

We increased TLC Africa’s social media following – New Facebook likes: 10 934; New Twitter likes: 4900; Facebook post interactions: 15 627; NGP announcement post: 820 interactions, 585 likes, 117 comments, 56 121 organic reach.

The TLC Africa Facebook page had 42 811 followers (90% of likes were from South Africa and 2.5% were from other African countries). At the end of the campaign the Facebook likes increased to 88 881 and the gap between South African likes vs rest of Africa likes closed significantly. In December 55% of likes were from South Africa and 38% of likes were attributed to other African countries.

For us, we were most proud that through communication we ensured that TLC was positioned as a brand which is committed to its African audience.