Precious L. Williams, Esq. is an unstoppable full figured diva on a mission: to celebrate the beauty of curvy women in all that she does.
Frustrated, but far from intimidated with her limited lingerie options, Precious decided to create Curvy Girlz Lingerie, a dynamic intimate apparel brand that caters to her fellow plus size fashionistas. Her goal is to make Curvy Girlz Lingerie the premier lingerie destination for curvy women.
A gifted orator and serial entrepreneur, Precious has been selected as the keynote speaker at a number of conferences, entrepreneurial and women centered summits, fundraisers and corporate training events. Additionally, she has won several business pitch competitions in New York City including the Harlem Business Alliance’s 3rd Annual Business Plan competition, the 1st Annual Perfect Pitch contest, and the Workshop in Business Opportunities Executive Summary and Elevator Pitch Competition. On May 16, 2013, Precious also became the 2013 Black Enterprise Elevator Pitch Champion in Columbus, Ohio.
Check out our Q&A with Precious below!
Natasha: Can you describe how you educated yourself about making fashion, particularly for plus size women?
Precious: I did a lot of library research because I could not get a job in fashion to save my life. I also interviewed 237 curvy women in New York City to understand their needs and wants in creating the perfect lingerie for my fellow full figured divas. In addition, I went to a lot of department and specialty stores to figure out things and completely taught myself. I am a plus size woman so I know how clothes should fit on me – it’s not the most scientific approach but I simply deconstructed different clothes and plus size lingerie to figure out how to make them.
Precious: I always play my theme songs: “Bad” by Michael Jackson, “Diva” by Beyonce, “Moment for Life” by Nicki Mina and “Lose Yourself” by Eminem to get me into the zone of a champion. I begin by being very clear on setting a scene in my audience’s mind to get them to be one with me. Then, I tell an emotionally compelling story for I am a Master Storyteller. I know how to tell a full story in 30 seconds as well as 30 minutes. I grab you with my passion, energy and intensity and never let you go. The truth is national networks have been interested in my story – because it was very unique. Finally, in order for me to own my pitch, I need to practice, practice, practice, and know and study my audience beforehand. It is important to walk into these pitches like I am a four star general going into battle.
Precious: I had no other choice but to win pitch competitions. My family doesn’t come from money and my friends wouldn’t loan me any money, so I had to win each and every time. I was also fired from my job and I couldn’t just get another job while simultaneously getting my company off the ground because attorneys work long hours. So I knew going back to being a lawyer wasn’t going to work. There’s more money to be made being an entrepreneur than being an attorney – you couldn’t pay me anything to go back.
Natasha: What are things you believe are critical for a successful pitch?
Precious: Practice perfectly and perform perfectly. You should treat yourself as though you are the star of show and perform as if it’s always showtime.
Precious: I first promoted Curvy Girlz Lingerie through our website and creating a twist on the home party model. Because of my unique approach to selling lingerie, my story led me to national television on MSNBC’s “Your Business.” I killed my elevator pitch live! I’m very strategic and I knew once I got on television, sales were going to be a piece of cake! Doing the 1:1 home party model was what separated us from our competition.
Natasha: What marketing practices do you find to be the most effective at getting new customers and sales?
Precious: Being authentic and real all the time. People love my Facebook Lives and love meeting me in person and at networking events. Always being available to meet with a customer and respond to a customer inquiry in a timely fashion. People love that I curse and am far from perfect. I’m just me – I don’t want to be perfect. My hair is curly, wavy and unruly and its what sets me apart from others. I have the Einstein look, by the hair, down pat I don’t like being put in a box.
I’ve been featured on television shows on ABC, MSNBC, BET, TV1, CNN, Essence Magazine, Black Enterprise Magazine, New York Daily News and I did it on my own. I used to ask people to help me to get my name and brand out there and it just didn’t work out. So I became my own PR machine and I am good!
Precious: They are 3-hour events. Women and our very own CGL Stylists get excited to host our parties at their homes and invite their friends. The first hour is spent networking and getting to know the attendees better. The second hour is the formal presentation where I discuss how I started Curvy Girlz Lingerie and how we celebrate curvy women. In the third hour, sales are made once they try on samples. People can sign up on our website to host a home party. We normally make between $600- $2,000 per party is what we aim for in sales. I currently have 13 CGL Stylists under me, across the nation, in the South, and I’m hoping to have a Stylist in each state within a year.
Precious: I just love Tory Burch and Traci Reese. But I know when I make it big, I want to have Tom Ford design my entire wardrobe. Custom made baby!
Precious: Real estate and Criminal. I didn’t like it and I couldn’t stand being an attorney. There are seriously more opportunities to live my life on my terms as an entrepreneur.
Natasha: How did you meet your business coach, and who is she/he?
Precious: Through my work in entertainment, I gained access with coaches like Mark Thompson (Business coach to Richard Branson,) Jack Canfield (author, Chicken Soup for the Soul,) Bill Walsh (business coach to thousands of rainmakers) and Carol Look. I have access to twenty of the most famous and amazing coaches worldwide. Now, I am working with Tracy Burnett and she is helping me with making Curvy Girlz Lingerie, Perfect Pitches by Precious and #CurvyGirlzNation grow bigger.
Precious: 1) Nationally syndicated talk show host by the time I’m 40. 2) #CurvyGirlzNation will be #1 plus size company in the world. I’m putting that out there and standing firm on it 3) Curvy Girlz Lingerie will be #1 intimate apparel brand for plus size women in the world.
I’m boldly proclaiming this!
I’m tired of curvy girls feeling rejected or not wanted. I remember when I started, people told me that no one cares about fat or curvy girls, and I thought: “ok well I do!” And then I found out that 67% of the women in the US are considered plus size – I thought there was a market ripe for the taking. I want to take care of the total woman, her life, her career, her relationship, her business – that’s why #CurvyGirlzNation and Curvy Girlz Lingerie are different.
Precious: Pull the trigger. Just do it. You have all the time in the world to mess up and start all over. If I could go back in time, I would’ve started at a younger age. I would’ve gotten great mentors and pay for business coaching. I would go to different conferences and network with high-level people. I would look at my own circle and if I’m the smartest person in my circle, then I’m in the wrong circle. When it comes to networking, I go to higher dollar events not ones where I see the same people constantly. Be bold, be brash and be ambitious. When people say no, just move on to the next opportunity. I don’t really pay attention to no. If you have haters in business, then you’re doing something right.
Starting your own business is no easy feat. You can never know enough or get enough great advice. Want to connect more with Precious? Check out Curvy Girlz Lingerie and #CurvyGirlzNation to learn from this ambitious and forward thinking CEO!
P.S. Don’t forget to pick your FREE “How To SLAY the Sexy #CurvyGirlz Way” e-Book HERE!