By Lauren Hermon
When Lucinda Roberts left city life to settle in the Adelaide Hills, she had every intention to get straight down to business – both her own and other people’s.
The South Australian designer and entrepreneur recently launched Rai Projects, a service helping reshape Adelaide Hills businesses “stuck on a plateau”.
Lucinda works with new small to medium businesses from inception to the moment of growth. She also assists existing businesses tackle future problems and motivates ongoing growth.
“Rai Projects was born from my personal design career where it’s more about delivering brands for businesses, but helping them to understand how to build that brand into their business,” Lucinda says.
“What I’m trying to do is build systems so they can actually create accessible brands,” she adds.
The term ‘rai’ is Arabic and loosely translates to ‘this is the thinking, here is the view’.
“I enjoy that idea. A lot of business owners have a dream and vision and then people often perceive it in different ways,” she says.
“The whole idea is to deliver brands that people can actually believe in and put in place.”
After relocating to Lobethal in the Adelaide Hills last year, Lucinda is prepared for a challenge in her home region.
“I feel like businesses here are going to be difficult to crack, but it’s worth it if it means turning some of them into branded businesses that people cherish,” she says.
“I believe the Adelaide Hills has a lot of potential and history… many of the businesses here have been running for some time.
“And, I’m in a delicate place where I’m here trying to encourage these businesses to go through some change when they’re comfortable with how they have been for years.”
Through Rai Projects, Lucinda has already started improving the brand identity of start-ups businesses, such as Loco Travel Magazine which is a storytelling publication sharing travel experiences and Yup Yup Labs, which aims to make people’s lives better by improving the cities where they live.
Helping to distinguish logos from brands, Lucinda believes the latter to be a “promise” made by a business.
“Your customers, clients, suppliers and consumers all have an expectation of your business that has been set by your brand promise,” she says.
“Often what a business owner sees as tangible or visualised forms of communication is actually their promise setting an expectation. When you’re able to meet those expectations, that is when your brand has its greatest value.”
She has close ties with the Adelaide Hills, having grown up in Strathalbyn before moving to Adelaide when she was 17.
At just 25-years-old, Lucinda surprisingly isn’t new to creating businesses that make a difference to people, businesses and the State.
In fact, she “gets a kick out of” connecting creative people with resources and networks through running Awesome Foundation which gives $1,000 grants every month to any ‘awesome’ idea or projects making a difference in the State.
Lucinda also runs Friends with Benefits, which she describes as the “market stall with a twist”.
“Once a month at local markets we showcase new makers with their products… it’s all about giving creatives a place to showcase their produce or ideas,” she explains.
And when someone “invests in her”, Lucinda likes to “deliver the best possible results”.
“I see a need that will help people in the most beneficial way… that’s just who I am and where my values and morals sit,” she says.
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