Stella Morrison is an award-winning former journalist with more than 15 years of editorial experience. Her specialties are in content creation for SEO, brand voice development, content marketing strategy, and editorial calendar creation and management.
Stella is the owner of award-winning content marketing firm The Stellastra Effect and of cannabis digital marketing agency CannaContent. She is bi-coastal, splitting her time between New Jersey and California. She serves as the 2023-2024 Content Marketing Editor for AMA-San Francisco.
When not at her desk, you’ll find Stella singing to her houseplants, searching for great sushi spots, and thrifting for vintage treasures and great bargains.
Let’s learn more about Stella:
If you could write a book about your life, what would the title be, and why?
A collection of (probably too long) essays makes the most sense to me. I like the idea of a series of shorter stories, where I can really take time to dig into the different parts of what makes me who I am and what influences my outlook on the world. What would I call this book of essays? “Happy To Be Here,” maybe, or perhaps “It’s Complicated” is more fitting.
How about your professional life?
This title came a bit easier than the book about my life. I think I’d call this book “Yes, You Can Do This.”
I talk to people with regularity about the realities of working for yourself — in whatever form that takes, whether as a freelancer or starting a business — and the freedom that comes with it. I especially want women and non-binary people to know that perspective so they can prepare themselves as best as possible for unexpected challenges that may lie ahead in entrepreneurship. If the good, bad, and ugly from my little corner of the world can help make the journey a little easier for someone else, I’m happy to share it.
Why did you get involved with the AMA-New Jersey chapter? Why is this organization important to you?
I’m a Jersey girl through and through. Through 2024, I’m on what I like to call a “brief hiatus” in California, where I serve on AMA-San Francisco’s board as the Content Marketing Editor. But my heart belongs in the Garden State — I walk too fast for Californians. But in all seriousness, New Jersey is where many of my professional connections and networks reside. It’s my home base and where I’ve grown my agencies, The Stellastra Effect and CannaContent.
I’m a firm believer in building bridges and creating community. We are stronger together and being in constant competition does us no good. There’s lots to celebrate in uplifting, helping, and supporting one another. This is especially true as marketers brace for (or maybe embrace?) game-changing and challenging developments in our profession. As an AMA-New Jersey member, I can create those important connections, expand my referral network, and meet decision-makers.
What best advice would you give new professionals in your industry?
You’ve picked a really, well, interesting time to join the content marketing profession. You may have heard talk of generative AI “taking your job.” First and foremost, don’t be discouraged — the human touch is still very much needed and likely will be for some time. But don’t have your head in the sand, either. The arrival of AI highlights the inequities in our industry. It’s my opinion that untalented or outright bad writers are not going to make it very far.
I’d highly recommend specializing in a few niches. I believe new-to-the-scene generalists who don’t have a specialty are more likely to struggle to find work. Find a few topics that inspire you and really dive into those industries. Network with professionals in that space and get to know the intricacies, pain points, and trends in those industries
As you step into your content marketing role, make sure to explore complementary skills that can enhance your talents now and in the future. SEO is a natural companion, of course, but there’s a whole world to explore. Perhaps social media marketing really inspires you, or maybe you find digging into data and analytics enthralling. The more well-rounded your abilities, the more versatile you are — and the better your content will perform overall.
If someone wants to connect with you, what is the best way to reach out to you on social media?
Please find me on LinkedIn – linkedin.com/in/stellamorrison
Are you interested in becoming more involved with AMA New Jersey? Read about our membership benefits here and explore volunteer opportunities for hands on experience partnering with marketing experts.