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This 24-page guide condenses decades of experience in the start-up and commercialization industry, helping founders starting new business avoid ‘Founders Regret’ – by thinking through 10 Vital Questions you need to address early in your start-up journey.

What’s in the 10 Vital Questions Start Up Wise Guide? 

The 10 Vital Questions guide contains nuggets of wisdom and practical knowledge distilled from Richard Milne's experience helping hundreds, possibly thousands, of start-up founders. It aims to help founders with a business idea, to start their business successfully and become profitable long-term, get things done in the right order, and avoid mistakes he has witnessed many times.

By breaking down the start-up development process into 10 steps, guided by simple questions, he gives the reader an easy to follow understanding of issues such as concept validation, viability assessment, intellectual property, product development and design, manufacturing, branding, packaging and digital development, and securing capital funding.


  1. How Do I Know If My Idea Is Original?
  2. How Can I Define Exactly Who My Target Market Is?
  3. How Do I Know Exactly What My Customer Wants And How Much They Are Willing To Pay?
  4. What Will My Development Costs Be? How Much Do I Need To Raise?
  5. Which Business Model Would Best Suit My Start-Up?
  6. Do I Have Any Intellectual Property Rights?
  7. What Process Do I Use To Develop The Concept?
  8. What Process Do I Use To Develop My Brand?
  9. What Are My Options For Raising Capital?
  10. What Is The Best Legal Structure For My Business?

Why You Need to Conduct Market Research Before Commencing Development of Your Start-Up Idea

You will learn about the importance of market research

Before you invest your time, money, and resources into pursuing a new start-up idea, you ensure that you know who your target market really is, you need to ensure that your planned product or service is in demand, and you need to understand how much people are willing to pay for your product or service.  The willingness to pay might also depend on the style of payment - subscription model, compared to outright payment.  Free for basic functionality or services, with payment only required for better or additional services (a 'freemium' model).

It is important to get answers to these questions before you invest too heavily with your time and money. After performing market research you should have clarified whether there is a large enough pool of prospects who’re willing to pay for your product or service. An added benefit is that you may uncover areas where the competition is lagging behind, which you can use to your advantage to stand out from the rest.

The focus of Start Up Wise is helping startup businesses to launch and grow. We're Start-Up Experts in how to launch & fund your business. Richard Milne of Start Up Wise in an expert in the early-stage development of start-up businesses and has helped hundreds of founders to secure startup business funding.

In the 10 Vital Questions Before You Start-Up Guide, Start Up Wise founder, Richard Milne, outlines the five critical early-stage phases you need to get completed before you attempt to raise serious funding for your startup from investors. He also provides some insight into what investors are thinking about and looking for so they can make an informed decision prior to investing in a new start-up business.

You will learn how to work out if your business idea is original or not

Good businesses start with a good business idea. That's  fundamental

People are always looking for the best small business ideas to make money.

People in business often have new business ideas. And Entrepreneurial people have more than most.

However, not every startup business idea is a good business idea and not every idea is original or commercially viable.

In the 10 Vital Questions Before You Start-Up Guide, you will learn how to know if your business idea is good and to work out if your idea is original before setting up a small business. It provides small business advice and outlines what you can do if there are similar products out there. It also discusses patents, designs and trademarks and how to work out your point of difference or unique selling point.

If you are looking for small business help or small business ideas, the 10 Vital Questions Guide will help you find out if your idea is good and outlines 10 key steps to starting your own small business

If you are flying solo, it's worth getting some help and expert advice on how to start-up properly. The focus of Start Up Wise is helping startup businesses to launch and grow. Richard Milne of Start Up Wise in an expert in the early-stage development of start-up businesses and how to launch & grow your business. He has helped hundreds of founders commercialise their new business idea and secure business funding to grow their business.

Jason Cawthra
Managing Director & Founder, Infalurt

"Richard is extremely wise and knowledgeable when it comes to commercialising good business ideas by starting up a new small business. His 10 Vital Questions Guide addresses all the questions you need to think through before starting a business and investing your hard-earned savings or approaching investors for business funding. I only wish it had been around and I read it ten years ago!”


Nathan Bowie
Director, Sawtrac

“Since I’ve known Richard, he’s helped me avoid ‘Founders Regret’ twice already! He really knows the start-up process and guides you through it! I strongly encourage anyone thinking of starting a business to get hold of his 10 Vital Questions before they get too far down the track of starting their own business.”

Richard Milne has a wealth of start-up knowledge and hands-on practical experience, developed over 20 years in the start-up and commercialisation sectors.  

He is currently Managing Director of Start Up Wise, founding director of recycling and reuse platform Ziilch and Director of Commercialisation at INNOVIC – the Victorian Innovation Centre. Over a 30-year business career, Richard has founded several successful start-up businesses across hospitality, financial services, wine distribution, telecommunications and digital apps.
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