Hectic on 3’s Siyanda Manzini shares the secrets to bite-sized tween content

Interviewed by Jill Welsh


Inspiring South Africa’s bright, young stars with informative entertainment needs high-energy, visually stimulating bursts of games, interviews, skits, and quizzes. This rich content must be delivered at a pace unrivalled! We chat to Siyanda Manzini, producer of Hectic on 3 about how she and her team are acing a bite-sized tween show.


What do you have to consider when talking to the tween market?

It’s all about short, sharp, buzzing interactions and conversations with constant bite-sized content that keeps them coming back for more. The youth of today are growing with a huge YouTube, Facebook and Twitter influence. Video has up to 80% share of the online content demanded in our digital era. Okuhle Productions, a subsidiary within the Okuhle Group, has over a decade’s worth of experience in children’s programming. Producing SABC 2’s already successful magazine programme Hectic Nine-9, for teens aged 12-18, the transition to targeting the tween market (ages 8-12) was a natural one. And so Hectic on 3, a daily, live, interactive show was born.


Hectic on 3 is now five months old, what has the experience been like this far?

Launching a brand new show has been a phenomenal experience. SABC 3 is such an aspirational channel and Hectic on 3 is poised to inspire our young nation as an original, stand-alone, ‘never seen before’ kind of show. It’s been an amazing journey coming alongside Hectic Nine-9, operating out of the same studio, and really gleaning from them when it comes to understanding how to speak to the youth of South Africa.


So why should kids tune into Hectic on 3?

Hectic on 3 is a unique platform, derived for tweens as it shares insightful, power-packed, fast-paced information with playful themes for pure escapism. To stay current and shape culture, one has to dig deeper to do this well. The fans are very keen to interact with the presenters of the show and this is really the foundation of Hectic on 3’s initial success. Tweens love to share their feedback after each episode via WhatsApp and other social media. These vital chats are an excellent opportunity for researchers to get fresh ideas, and for content creators to steer the show appropriately. This tough crowd sees through anything fake or forced – if you can harness their communication channels correctly, you’re winning!


About Siyanda Manzini

Siyanda is a PE girl who spent a few years in Cape Town working for the Encounters Film Festival and Moonlighting films. Her social media status is ‘part pretty mama, part beast slayer!

Siyanda has been with Hectic on 3 from the start of their first live show on 30 April 2018. With her 8-year-old daughter, Zion, as a source of context after each show, Siyanda understands the tween market and what keeps them tuning in for more.

Siyanda’s advice for staying top of your game? Non-negotiable time out to look after yourself – to operate at your peak, you have to carve out those pockets of ‘me’ time. Her other secret weapon: mentors who are older than you; someone who has walked the path before and helps you see the bigger picture.


About Hectic on 3

Hectic On 3 offers young viewers aged 8-12 years old a full half hour of quality live television, filled with fun, creativity and plenty of slime! Three is the name of the game on Hectic On 3, as each episode explores three themes: Play, Create and Inspire. From DIY’s to Demo’s, Pranks and Skits, our young viewers can expect an interactive television experience to entertain and teach tweens about the wonderful world around them.

There’s more to Hectic On 3 than just thirty minutes of fun and excitement! Each episode addresses issues that affect our sophisticated tween audiences, as they navigate the changes from childhood to teenage years and discover who they want to be as their independence grows.

Tune into Hectic on 3 every weekday at 15h00 on SABC 3.


For enquiries, contact:
Siyanda Manzini, Television Producer
M: 021 486 2900
E: siyanda@okuhle.co.za