As a top influencer on Live.me with nearly 2 million followers, Jackelyn Shultz is one of the most recognizable and fast-growing names in the social media industry today. Known for her “mommy lifestyle” content, Jackie has inspired millions in her “Sprinkle Squad” to embrace both the difficulties and the blessings of parenthood.
Moreso, Jackie is among the top, new influencers to leverage fast-growing trends in livestreaming content and the most popular live video streaming platforms to build and connect with increasingly mobile and sizeable audiences. Learn how Jackie balances her busy and unique lifestyle in our exclusive interview:
How did you start creating content for social media, and how did you decide to settle into the mommy vlogger niche?
I actually never wanted to be in the spotlight growing up even though my dad, Howie Mandel, has always been in front of the camera. I decided in college that I wanted to become an elementary school teacher and serve disadvantaged youth in low-income communities. I got my Masters and credentials from UCLA and became a National Board Certified Teacher.
I worked in Crenshaw and East Los Angeles doing exactly what I set out to do and loved every minute of it. When I gave birth to my daughter, Abbey, I made the difficult decision to leave my profession and become a stay at home mom.
Even though being a mommy is the hardest job in the world, I knew that I wouldn’t be content unless I was also doing something for myself.
That is when my brother, Alex Mandel, suggested that I take up vlogging. He had been a YouTuber for years and urged me to give it a try. I knew nothing about the space and was concerned that no one would care to watch my videos, but I decided to undertake this new venture. I figured that this was a “hobby” that would keep me occupied while awarding me the opportunity to stay home with my kids.
I started filming my everyday life and documenting milestones. I was quickly surprised to see that other people began watching and commenting on my videos. Within a short period of time it has become so much more than just a hobby.
I get to bare my soul to the world and connect with other people that share similar experiences with me. I am an open book and extremely real which leads to being very vulnerable at times. I am lucky to have subscribers (who have dubbed themselves the Sprinkle Squad) that take the time to watch my vlogs, leave comments, and show their support in so many ways.
I have learned that in a world of filters and Pinterest, it is important for me to be real and stay true to myself so that other moms realize they are not alone. I am by no means perfect. I have many flaws and I am learning as I go. I don’t shy away from displaying my bad days, talking about not having time to brush my teeth, or discussing my frustration after dealing with multiple tantrums.
My goal is to be the mom, wife, daughter, friend, sister etc. that people can relate to because I don’t paint a picture of perfection. I love what I do, I appreciate the people I have been able to connect with, and I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else.
Live.me has been the livestreaming platform that I primarily use. It has been incredible because it gives me a way to connect with my subscribers and followers that I don’t typically get to do on other platforms. I am able to have a conversation with my subscribers in real time.
During my livestreams, I often answer questions, ask questions, and play fun games with the people watching. It is incredibly interactive and engaging.
The only scary aspect of livestreaming is that it is live. There have been a few instances where I have been livestreaming and the viewers have witnessed an occurrence that I would never have recorded or published on my vlog. For example, my husband poured water on me while I was livestreaming. He did it as a joke but I was furious. If I were vlogging, I would have turned off the camera and dealt with the situation between my husband I. Since I was livestreaming, the whole argument was displayed for the thousands of viewers to witness.
For example, my husband poured water on me while I was livestreaming. He did it as a joke, but I was furious. If I were vlogging, I would have turned off the camera and dealt with the situation between my husband I. Since I was livestreaming, the whole argument was displayed for the thousands of viewers to witness.
Of the social media platforms and mediums you use, which one do you feel works best for your content and lifestyle?
I can’t pick just one because I use each platform for a different purpose. I use YouTube to document my life. I publish 10-15 minute videos on Life with Jackie daily at 10:00 am. I use Twitter as a way to communicate and have discussions with my followers. Instagram is where I publish my FAVORITE photos of my family. Live.me is where I go when I have an hour of free time in the day to sit down and have a live conversation with my followers.
I also have a weekly show called Live With Jackie where I interview celebrities. That show doubles as a Podcast and can be found on iTunes, GooglePlay, iHeartRadio, and Spotify. Facebook is the platform where I post the best content from my vlogs. I will often post (behind the scenes) footage that didn’t make it into the vlog. I love social media and I find that each platform serves a different purpose.
What role does collaboration with other social media and entertainment influencers play in your content?
I try to collaborate with other entertainment and social media influencers as much as possible. The easiest collaboration is with my dad and brother, Howie and Alex Mandel. I have also had many celebrities on my weekly show, such as Perez Hilton, Maddie and Mackenzie Ziegler, Heidi Klum and Mel B., Matthew Santoro, Marlan Chan, and many more.
How do you choose which brands to work with? How do you decide which of your social platforms is the right choice for a campaign?
The brands that I work with have to fit my lifestyle and have a product that I believe my subscribers would benefit from. For example, I worked with a company called Dock-A-Tot. At the time, my son would not sleep more than a couple hours at a time. I was desperate to find a solution so I agreed to give their product a try because it was something that I genuinely wanted to use. The product was incredible and I felt good about recommending it to my viewers so that other moms could reap the benefits of this brand and get a few extra hours of sleep.
For example, I worked with a company called Dock-A-Tot. At the time, my son would not sleep more than a couple hours at a time. I was desperate to find a solution so I agreed to give their product a try because it was something that I genuinely wanted to use. The product was incredible and I felt good about recommending it to my viewers so that other moms could reap the benefits of this brand and get a few extra hours of sleep.
How do you juggle running multiple high-profile social media accounts, creating content, and finding quality time with your family?
It is definitely difficult and I get very little sleep. I am actually writing this response at 12:00 am!
My family is my number one priority. I very rarely edit, post, or answer comments during the day while I am spending time with them. After I put my kids to sleep I go into my bedroom and edit/upload my vlog.
I also answer every comment that is left on my YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram account. I am usually awake and working until about 1:00 am.
What are the best parts and toughest parts of motherhood and parenthood?
There are many days that I am tired, stressed, bored, frustrated, etc. but all those feelings pale in comparison to the overwhelming love and pride that I am filled with each and every day. I am in shock when I rewatch many of my old vlogs. Both of my kids are growing up so quickly and becoming amazing people with huge personalities.
Who is the bigger star, Abbey or Axel?
That is an unfair question because of the age difference. I would have to say that Abbey is the bigger star at this particular moment because she is able to talk.
She loves being in front of the camera and begs me to turn on the livestream. She is absolutely hilarious and constantly making me laugh. Axel is actually extremely funny as well.
They may have to battle for the spotlight when Axel gets a bit older.
Favorite “first” experience with your kids?
My favorite first experience was when Abbey met Axel in the hospital for the first time. I was so nervous because I didn’t know how Abbey was going to react to her new baby brother. I was overwhelmed with joy when I witnessed the immediate love and affection she displayed. A nurse walked into the room to check on Axel.
Abbey started screaming and crying while yelling at the nurse to leave her baby alone. I was filled with pride when I witnessed the amount of compassion and empathy that she showed. The two of them have been best friends ever since that day.
The two of them have been best friends ever since that day.
A toy that your kids are obsessed with?
Axel loves his baseball bat because Alex has been playing baseball with him lately.
Abbey loves her Barbies because she mimics those YouTube videos from the channel “Come Play With Me”.
Favorite America’s Got Talent act?
I just went to the first Live show today and watched my dad’s golden buzzer, Christian Guardino. He was incredible!
Do you have any upcoming projects that your fans will be excited about? What are you looking forward to in your career as a social media influencer?
I am excited about this interview =)
I am always open to new opportunities that may present themselves but I try to just live in the present and acknowledge the gratitude that I feel. I am appreciative of being able to do what I love to do each and every day.