Often referred to as the "marketing maven" by industry peers, Wendy Montes de Oca, MBA has nearly 20 years of experience in marketing, media, and publishing with expertise in multichannel, direct response, and Web marketing. Wendy has generated more than $150 million in total revenues for Fortune 500 companies, top publishers, consulting clients, and her own firm, Precision Marketing and Media, LLC. She is the creator of the groundbreaking SONAR Content Distribution Model and author of the best-selling book Content Is Cash: Leveraging Great Content and the Web for Increased Traffic, Sales, Leads and Buzz [Que Publishing, Paperback].

Here are 10 tips, all applicable to both AdWords and Bing, to help you get the most of out of your paid search campaigns in order to maximize return on investment. In a paid search account, there are countless ways to optimize performance toward improving ROI. Look at areas where positive results can be expanded and low performers can be reduced or removed to improve overall ROI. There are many different tactics that can accomplish this end. The following tips are applicable to both AdWords and Bing and can help directionally with other ad platforms as well.

Hot on the heels of Google's Distinguished Engineer Matt Cutts discussing what he feels are the biggest search engine optimization myths, Bing's Senior Product Manager Duane Forrester has written about what he feels are 10 of the biggest myths in SEO. While some of them are true SEO myths, a few fall under best practices. You ideally want to rank No. 1, but just because you aren't No. 1 doesn't mean you're a failure. Sites can do extremely well in positions two or three, and even the top couple of results on the second page of results. 

Last month, I asked you to imagine the future of SEO with a focus on "Entity Optimization" as I interviewed veteran semantic strategist Barbara Starr. We discussed an “answer engine” that uses relevant, machine-recognizable "entities" on Web pages to answer specific, well-refined queries. On Sept. 26, Google took another step toward becoming that answer engine with its Hummingbird update. In Danny Sullivan‘s live blog about the Hummingbird algorithm, he explains how Google is rapidly adopting semantic Web technology while still retaining parts of its old algorithm. This is Google’s solution for evolving from text links to answers

For search marketers, enhanced campaigns probably led to a busy July instead of a vacation. Mid-summer seems like the perfect time to reflect on both progress and opportunities in 2013. You've just invested in fundamental changes to your AdWords campaigns, but there is another search platform making waves—Bing Ads. Let's get the update in one big (ads) post. Last month, Bing Ads announced new search ad experiences within Windows 8.1, a different approach to the traditional 10 blue links. They also delivered hundreds of platform updates during the last year—let's outline many of those updates:

Bing is hopping on the April Fools Day joke bandwagon later than Google and even Wolfram Alpha, but it's taking a swing at Google in one of the two gags that it announced via separate blog posts. On its main search blog, Bing has an esoteric blog post that talks about "Bing Basic," a feature that lets searchers experience Bing's homepage without the large, colorful and almost always beautiful, clickable photos.

It's been more than four years since Bill Gates worked full time at Microsoft, but he's still promoting Bing, the company's three-plus-year-old search engine. Gates, who's still serving as Microsoft's nonexecutive chairman but is focused full time on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, promoted Bing during an "Ask Me Anything" conversation on Reddit. It happened when Reddit user "Fozzy420″ asked Gates, "Do you guys really use Bing? I mean seriously …"

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