Melissa Hunter

Melissa Hunter, influencer & consultant

 
dreamstime_l_44011553-faded.jpg

Bio

Professional consultant with social influencer expertise

When Melissa Hunter takes on a new challenge, she doesn’t do it in half measures.  Instead, she attacks the task from multiple angles, not just succeeding at it, but excelling all the while.  When Multiple Sclerosis sidelined her from her high-powered job in midtown Manhattan, she found a new outlet for her drive and creativity with a little help from her daughter:  the world of YouTube.  In the four and a half years since she first started her extremely successful YouTube channel – and, more recently, a family-friendly YouTube network – she’s learned the social media/social influencer marketing world inside and out.  Melissa has also become an expert on family-friendly content, the toy industry, and its brands, and she has become a much sought-after speaker and presenter on these topics for events and conferences across the country.

“If you are trying to reach children, tweens, teens, or anyone under the age of 30, you really need to be on YouTube,” says Melissa.  “YouTube is where people go for information, for entertainment, for news, to vent their frustrations, and to share experiences.  YT is more than just videos – it’s also a community.  There is more going on than just the videos.” 

Melissa has made it her mission to educate anyone she can on this topic, speaking on panels and giving presentations at places like StreamCon, ChiTag, Golin, Sweet Suite, and others.  She also consults for major toy companies on their social media and influencer strategies.  “I have the ability to connect quickly with an audience and put them in a comfortable place where they’re able to receive the message in a way that is just humorous enough to make the message sticky,” says Melissa of her public speaking and consulting engagements. 

“I’m an excellent advocate for social media influencing, family-friendly content, and YouTube because I’ve been able to take my channel from zero to where it is today in such a short period of time,” Melissa continues.  “It’s spun off to become a whole separate business with a network where I’m working with other channels and teaching them how to replicate what I’ve done.”  Everywhere she goes, she shares her message on influencer marketing and YouTube with her trademark sense of humor and relatability that has made her a YouTube star as well.

Melissa and her daughter Gracie started the Mommy and Gracie Show on YouTube in June of 2012. The goal was simply to have fun together reviewing dolls that they loved and collected.  Known for their catchphrase, “So profesh,” their enthusiasm, humor, and unique mother-daughter relationship quickly won the hearts of viewers, and the channel grew to become one of the top destinations for fans of toys, games and doll lines, now boasting over 722,000 subscribers and over 411,000,000 views.

At the 2016 Women In Toys Wonder Women Awards, Melissa and Gracie were named Social Influencers of the Year.  They’ve also been featured on “CBS This Morning” and in newspapers around the world through an Associated Press piece that reported on their approach to partnering with toy brands and recognizing it for its uniqueness.  Melissa is a member of the Toy Insider Parent Advisory Board and creates video content for their website focusing on the intersection of parenting, toys, and life on YouTube.

While she grew the Mommy and Gracie Show channel, Melissa realized the need for a family-friendly YouTube network, and Family Video Network was born in 2014.  In two and a half years, the network has gone from a mere concept to a full-blown network representing over 100 family creators.  FVN is a highly curated collection of child-focused and family-friendly influencers providing content that is both advertisers safe and entertaining for children and their families.  FVN Founder Melissa is dedicated to using both her business brain (prior to her forced retirement, she worked at several Fortune 100 companies) and mother's heart to support the network’s roster of channels, help them grow, and connect brands with the content creators in an ethical fashion.  FVN’s roster includes some of the top talent, as well as new, exciting, up-and-coming creators, in the Toy Review, Education and Family Vlogging genres.  “The best part,” says Melissa, “is that we aren't just a network of family friendly influencers, we are a family of content creators supporting each other and building relationships that transcend the digital world.”

As a former competitive public speaker, debate team coach, on-air radio personality, and public speaking teacher, Melissa is a pro who can give talks to any type of audience – be it a room full of millennial moms, brand employees, social media influencers, media, or corporate executives.  “What you get if you hire me is a very engaging and relatable speaker who is not overly slick,” Melissa says.  “I can relate to people at all levels.  I’m able to move the dial in my presentation to fit the audience that I’m in front of.  I know how to speak to them, and I know how to hit the hot buttons of all the different groups that I see in a room so that everybody will walk out having connected with me in some way and having heard the message that we want them to walk away with.”

 
MELISSA HUNTER HEAD SHOT.jpg

 

Hire me.

I'm available for consulting projects, speaking engagements, presentations, and panel. Let's discuss your needs!


See me in action

StreamCon 2015 Industry Summit: "Leveraging the massive power of family video"

Golin 2015 panel: "Partnering with kid influencers"

ClamourCon Inaugural Family Influencer Event May 2018. Vlog and reflections on success.


In the studio

Inspiration! Rise Up Like a Phoenix from the Ashes of Your Life. You can do it!

Toy Insider | Why You Need Family Game Night

ChiTag | Mommy and Gracie Show Live

Teddy Ruxpin re-launch interview with Wicked Cool Toys


 
dreamstime_l_36643651.jpg

Applause

We’ve worked with Melissa Hunter across multiple events as a guest, a speaker, and a marketing partner, and she always brings with her a wealth of connections and knowledge. Melissa has tremendous insight into the Children’s YouTube space coming both from her professional relationships and - even more - personal experiences of being a mother.
— Peter Tatara, Director of Content & Communities, LeftField Media
Melissa Hunter brings to the table passion and authenticity to the new and exciting space of social and influencer marketing. Melissa understands how to organically build a brand with fresh perspective and a keen eye on new tech within various social platforms and YouTube.
— Tiffany Kayar, Integrated Marketing, Spin Master
Melissa is a true talent and brings an incredible amount of energy and enthusiasm to her work. She is well-regarded as an important influencer in the toy industry, and has an uncanny ability to authentically connect with audiences of all ages both online and off. Her passion and enthusiasm are contagious and she’s a genuine pleasure to work with. And she inspires us all to be more playful!
— Mary Kay Russell, Executive Director, WIT - Women in Toys, Licensing & Entertainment
Melissa is among the most savvy and competent experts in the influencer marketing space. She has a distinct talent for connecting creative and business professionals, drawing from her experiences on each side of the industry. She is my go-to reference for advice on discussing delicate business topics with digital influencers and always seems to know the best phrasing for engaging people on difficult issues diplomatically.
— Jonathan Katz, CEO, Clamour
Melissa Hunter is a top social influencer in the toy industry. Her trusted relationships with toy manufacturers, retailers, and experts make her an authority in the world of playthings. Her YouTube videos reach millions of consumers, and her radiant personality shines in each and every video. I have had the extreme pleasure of hearing Melissa speak to other influencers on numerous occasions, and each and every time she exudes a perfect combination of professionalism and casual humor that few can master. She is a personable, passionate person full of knowledge, which she is always eager to share with others.
— Laurie Schacht, Chief Toy Officer, Toy Book & Toy Insider
Melissa Hunter brings energy, joy and passion into everything she does. She’s entertaining, motivating, authentic and truly a change maker in the toy and tech arena.
— Ashley Mady, President, Brandberry; President of WIT - Women in Toys, Licensing & Entertainment
Melissa not only understands influencer marketing from the brand perspective and the creator perspective, but she is also able to communicate the ins and outs of the topic with her typical humor and grace to audiences who are lucky enough to hear her speak. She’s always generous with her time and her knowledge, and it’s a pleasure to work with her as a PR rep for a top toy company, because I know she is a wonderful brand ambassador and champion.
— Sheena Stephens, Group Vice President, MWWPR

 

Just the facts

  • NYC-area based, and also willing to travel for speaking engagements
  • speaks on panels and gives presentations at places like ClamourCon,  StreamCon, ChiTag, Golin, Sweet Suite, and others
  • advises and consults with major brands about social media and influencer strategies
  • member of the Toy Insider Parent Advisory Board, creates regular video content for their website focusing on the intersection of parenting, toys, and life on YouTube
  • 2016 Women In Toys Wonder Women Awards Social Influencers of the Year (for Mommy and Gracie Show)
  • Toy Industry Association consultant
  • YouTube content creator:  Mommy and Gracie Show

        - 740,000 subscribers

        - 443,000,000 views

        - 132,000 Instagram followers

        - 23,000 Twitter followers

        - 25,000 Facebook followers

 

 
 

 

Socials & web