NAME: Shan Lucas
TITLE : TGS Designer
Years in Business : 4 months
COMPANY/Organization NAME: Trust God Sis Apparel
WEBSITE URL: TrustGodSisApparel.com
Tell me about your business. Trust God Sis Apparel (TrustGodSisApparel.com) designs apparel for the Christian Millennial Woman. It was designed to inspire faith and encourage life purpose and Godfidence. We remind Women of God that they are powerful and encourage them to find their God- given purpose.
Please tell me what being a business owner means to you and why you became an entrepreneur in the first place? I will say this ... I never intended to become an entrepreneur . I fully expected to go to school . Get a degree. Work and retire. There are our plans and then there are God's plans right ? My family has a ministry. We are REACH Ministries Orlando. My whole family is annointed. Mother-in-law is our Apostle, Husband is our Senior Pastor, Cousin-in-law is the Associate Pastor and finally my other Cousin-in-law is the Praise and Worship Leader. I found myself asking God what was my purpose in the ministry ? What was my role? Of course some people would tell me "oh you're the first lady" . What is that ?! What does that even mean ?! Sidenote if someone ever told me I would have married a pastor I wouldn't have believed them ! Yes. I support my husband in his calling to ministry. I will be everything and anything that REACH Ministries Orlando needs me to be. I fully intend to be the mother, sister and friend that anyone who enters our doors will need. But ! I've learned never to limit God. I'm not your average first lady ... I'm hitting the front row with chucks, jeans and a T-shirt! So I asked God "What would you have me to do? How can I serve your people Lord ?". The holy spirit gave me "women". I interpreted that to mean that my ministry would be to minister to the women. Great ! Umm how God ? My father knows me. He knows that I need very specific instructions. Just as my husband started the process of becoming Senior Pastor I told him that he needed to do a photoshoot. We should be working on the ministries online presence due to Covid. My husband isn't your average pastor so of course he protested a suit. He said, "Why can't I just wear a hoodie that says God is Dope"? I said you can wear whatever you want dear! We can only be us . I made three shirts. I loved my shirt so much that I wore it to church. I received so many compliments ...that I made another and another . Before I knew it I had an entire collection of shirts. I started to receive orders . Some were custom. After a while I become overwhelmed. I asked God for one message. That would appeal to everyone because I had found my ministry. Shirts ! Every morning I scroll down my Facebook timeline looking for friends that need prayer. I noticed more and more I would respond to my friends "Just give it to God. Trust God Sis". That was it ! I wanted every woman I ever met to know "Trust God Sis" and thus the TGS Apparel Line was born. Not as a business but as a ministry !
What or who has been your greatest influence in business and why?
Definitely Krystal Lee of Girl + God. For the simple fact that she is just dope. I watched her free T Shirt Master Class and was inspired by how genuine she is. As Christians we can place so many requirements on ourselves but Krysal said it best "why cant you be cute and love God"? Her brand is rooted in sisterhood, life purpose and personal development. Definitely want to be her when I grow up and I would be so blessed to meet her in person one day to tell her how much her brand inspired me. I was so conscious of how unpolished I was as a "First Lady" and then my friend and author Elmina Morisette author of "Christ Renewed Everything About Me "
@SheisRenewedInChrist, told me "God called you to minister the gospel in a unique way. In a way that will be received by the women that YOU are intended to reach". I lead with that.... Our brand is who it's for and that's on what? Purrrrr!
What would you say is your greatest professional accomplishment to date? This has been an awesome journey! I would have to say hosting my first Club Room on the ClubHouse App. When I say that "this' isn't even me! I work a 9 to 5 and looked at spreadsheets all day... so glory be to God that I have been able to grow a following and establish a community on Social Media. We have been on Instagram for maybe three months. I have met women all over the United States. They show up and show out week after week. Some of them I text every morning! So hosting that club room and seeing the support from women that have been following our content has made my heart smile. God has been pushing and stretching me. Public speaking is not me! I did it for an hour . Woo thank you God!
What’s the best advice you have received in business that you wish to pass on to my readers?
Be yourself and stay consistent. What God has for you is for you. Stop looking at the next person.
What has been the most effective marketing initiatives or programs you have used to promote your business?
Instagram and Clubhouse have been effective in helping us build a tribe and encourage intimate engagement.
What one thing have you learned as a small business owner that has served you well over the years? Ask God. If God is at the center of it... you will be successful. Also, people have to "Know, Like and Trust You". I'm not Nike. I don't have celebrity endorsements (yet - thank you in advance God). So when people buy TGS they aren't buying a design or even a shirt, they are buying Shan. They are buying into the ministry. Put yourself out there. You either have an excellent product or an excellent image. While God continues to work on the graphic design aspect of TGS, I have been putting all my efforts into displaying God's excellent image in our brand. The image of boldness, sisterhood and in a word "dopeness".
Are there any resources or tools you’d like to share with other small business owners that have helped you run your business? When I say I'm a newbie ... I'm a newbie! Facebook Business Suite is bae! This feature of Facebook allows you to link your business and Instagram pages so that you can create and schedule posts. Perfect for the busy entrepreneur. I started TGS in my last semester of graduate school right before my husband was installed as senior pastor ... ya girl was busy! This tool will allow you to centralize your operations if you are social media based. Also, great for scheduling content in advance when I need to fast.
Do you have any new projects coming up (or have you just completed a big project ~ reached a milestone, etc.)? If so, please tell me about it. Yes! I'm excited to be launching the spring collection of Trust God Sis windbreakers and tees. We are based in Orlando Florida. The springtime for us means rain. Lots of rain.
What do you do for fun/relaxation?
I have a very healthy social life. I love to network with other business women . Allow your purpose to pick your people. I joined the Millionheiress Club, a business group for black female entrepreneurs. We have a blast! We just did a group dance class. I also enjoy brunches with the gang every other weekend.
What is the Number One Business Goal you plan to accomplish over the next year? Spreading awareness and online presence. We want to grow our tribe to 5,000 women this year. We want 5,000 women saying "Trust God Sis"!
You want to write a book on...
"Why I Trust God Sis" I want to write this book as my testimony. To tell women why I Trust God because of who he is and where he has brought me from. I've experienced a lot... all before the age of 22. I believe that my trials were necessary to minister to the women that we meet. I have been married longer than I have been single but honey I have been through it. I went back and got the T shirt (See what I did there!). I want women to know that it gets better like my very dear sister Rosemary A. Joseph sings in her new song "better" listen to it on instagram @OutreachRosemary. Shameless plug. TGS gone step... wherever ! There is light after Teen pregnancy, rape , domestic violence, poverty and love and relationship addiction. If he did it for me he can and will do it for anyone else.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers? Trust God Sis!
What’s the best way for the readers of My Divine Beauty Obsession to connect with you? Instagram : Instagram.com/TrustGodSisApparel
Club House : @Shan Lucas