At its simplest the dark funnel is just word of mouth – where people share their knowledge, experiences or recommendations about a product or service with others.

It can be both positive and negative and is often invisible to tracking by sales and marketing teams. Yet sales opportunities that enter the pipeline because of word of mouth tend to close more often and faster. This is not surprising as conversations start on a stronger footing due to the recommendation coming from a trusted source.

So why the rise of a new term?