Communo was founded in 2017 by Chris Kneeland and Ryan Gill, in response to their frustration with the lack of tools available to help grow their successful agency businesses. Communo is a talent optimization platform that matches highly-vetted talent with advertising agencies and brands looking to staff projects or positions. Communo connects professionals across the entire industry, creating an ecosystem by facilitating meaningful relationships, networks and collaboration. Communo is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Canada and has offices across North America.
In 2011, Chris Kneeland merged his advertising agency with a digital firm he acquired. Disaster struck the new full service firm immediately through the loss of their largest account. With 65% of revenue gone, Kneeland and partner Ryan Gill pivoted. They focused the new firm on audience engagement, renamed it CULT and moved to a “Hollywood studio” model of a small core team that tapped a large network of freelancers and other small agencies for the more specialized and rapidly changing skills.
CULT thrived under the new model. Grown revenue double digits every year while reducing staff from 46 to 21.
The firm survived the initial shock and began to thrive and grow, without growing their headcount or their overhead. That network became Communo which is now home to over 30,000 freelancers and over $65M worth of work.
In a couple of years that network blossomed to 72 different entities. Cults Collective became Communo, which allowed these firms to feed each other. Now thousands of agencies.