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Hunter’s & Thapelo Mokoena Seek New Face for 2016/17 Campaign


Africa’s largest cider brand, Hunter’s, is using an ‘Idols’ format competition to be judged by its current brand ambassador, Thapelo Mokoena, and the brand’s creative team to search for a new face for its 2016/17 multi-channel campaign.

The successful applicant will replace the South African actor and television personality who is handing over the refreshment torch after nine years on the job.

Entries into the competition are being driven by a digital submission and promoted via a digital and radio campaign, ‘#BeTheChina’, created by Thapelo and the brand’s agencies, Quirk and BBDO. It urges young males to post a short video highlighting why they should get the job on all social media channels, and tagging @HuntersCider along with #BeTheChina.

The call for entries ends on April 22. Finalists will star in their own screen test and will be interviewed by an expert panel of the brand’s creative team, TV director and marketers and entertainers led by Mokoena in an ‘Idols’ format competition. The campaign featuring the new face of Hunter’s will launch in July 2016.

The relevant urls are (call for entries) and (submit an audition video).

Quirk and BBDO were briefed by Global Marketing Manager, Maijaliina Hansen, and Mokoena earlier this year to develop communication that would find a new face for Hunter’s to reflect its real and genuine brand values, including authenticity, inclusivity and confidence.

Secondary objectives included formally communicating the handover from Mokoena, who consumers know and love, to the new face of the Hunter’s for the 2016/17 campaign, and to celebrate the Mokoena/Hunter’s journey over the last nine years.

“Hunter’s does things differently to all other brands. We are selling nothing but real, natural cider. And with real, natural cider comes real, authentic communication. This means brand owner, Distell, needs real, genuine people to be the face of the brand,” explained Hansen.

“Real cider equals real people. As Hunter’s brand ambassador, Thapelo was a natural fit. As the ‘face’ of Hunter’s since 2008 when he helped launch Hunter’s ‘Global Cooling’ campaign, he embodied Hunter’s brand values with his disarming honesty, easy confidence, and real and genuine behaviours.

“We’ll miss him, that’s for sure, but we all recognise that it’s time for change. We’re just so excited he’s driving the search to find the new ‘face’ of Hunter’s. If anyone knows how to walk, talk and think like a Hunter’s china, Thapelo does.

“And what better way of finding a real face for the campaign than by opening up the search to all the talented real people in South Africa?” she quipped.

As one of his final responsibilities as the main Hunter’s china , Mokoena will act as a mentor to guide the finalists on what it takes to represent the authentic and relaxed Hunter’s brand values.

“Quite simply, this is the most refreshing job on earth,” explained Mokoena. “Hunter’s will need the successful china for TV ads, radio ads, print ads, parties, events and travel. He’ll work with some of SA’s hottest creative talent and receive a very refreshing pay cheque.

“Young guys over the age of 25, 100% real and a natural on camera and ready to take on a world of refreshment, who have the look, the acting skills and the charm to be the #1 china, should grab the opportunity to audition with both hands.

“Being the face of one of the world’s leading cider brands is a real ride. Trust me; they’ve got nothing to lose by applying for the job,” he said.



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