Digital marketing is about building real-time connections with and marketing to real human beings who are inspired to take actions through value and stories that a brand offer. A well-thought-out digital marketing strategy helps a business formulate a plan of actions and take right decisions required to be successful online; it is important to have a strategy in place in order to produce maximum results. Depending on the needs and nature of your business, a masterfully crafted online strategy can help achieve multiple business goals from lead generation to increase in revenue. Following are some basic and extremely important steps to build a profitable online marketing strategy for a business:Understand your audienceIt is foolish to market a product without understanding the needs and interests of its consumers. Building buyers persona is important to get a clear picture of your ideal customers. Assumptions do not really work when it comes to building a long-term online marketing strategy. The information required in the process should be based on real data. Age, location, interests, income, challenges, and priorities of your audience will help you understand your customers and build a relevant and effective marketing strategy.Define your goals and toolsMarketing goals can be defined by taking into account your fundamental business goals. Increasing revenue online is the ultimate goal of almost every business leveraging digital channels to improve its bottom line. It is critical to have pertinent tools in place in order to measure the effectiveness of your digital marketing efforts. Tracking down key metrics helps a business improve and adjust its strategy in accordance with future needs and challenges. Study the effectiveness of your online marketing assetsYou can incorporate elements of owned, earned, and paid media into your digital marketing strategy. Owned media: your website, social profiles, and content are elements you have complete control over. Owned media also include off-site content in form of articles and blogs. Earned media refers to the recognition and exposure a business earns through word-of-mouth. And, paid media, as the name suggests, refers to the exposure a business gain as a result of paid marketing activities such as Google AdWords.A successful online marketing strategy demands a balanced use of all the channels. You should evaluate, audit, and measure the effectiveness of your digital assets to generate maximum ROI.Once you have gone through the research and evaluation process and have a clear vision of the elements that are going to govern your strategy, it’s time to bring all of it together and document the series of actions you are going to take to achieve your business goals.