How To Stay In Control In A Sales Call (Law of the Rubber Band)

Sales podcast ep 70 Stay In Control In A Sales Call - The Slow Pitch
Sales Podcast, The Slow Pitch
The Slow Pitch Sales Podcast
How To Stay In Control In A Sales Call (Law of the Rubber Band)


Who Is In Control During a Sales Call?

In this episode we talk about who is in control, how to know when you’re not in control, and how to stay in control in a sales call. This is an interesting episode in that you may think you stay in control during a sales call, but are you really? Let’s find out.

The key point in this episode is to know when you’re actually in control and how to recognize when you’re not. You are not in control if you care more about the sale than they do. If they don’t care if they buy or have no emotional attachment to the sale, but you do… you’re going to lose the sale because you care more than they do.

This is based on the Law of the Rubber Band. The Law of the Rubber Band (or Elastic Band Theory) is a concept whereby you must pull away to bring someone closer to you in a relationship. This is a powerful tool that every salesperson should use when it’s appropriate.

The concept is simple to understand and simple to use, but the wording choice can affect the outcome. Keep in mind the idea is to pull away in such a way that allows the buyer to say, “I am interested” and that allows you to ask, “Why is that?” It becomes a bit of cat and mouse, but this will also help you eliminate potential buyers who are actually just tire kickers.


Related Articles 

5 Tips For Salespeople (pt 3) – Go For The NO!

5 Tips For Salespeople (pt 4) Pain Questions

The Law of the Rubber Band


NOTE: Some links may be affiliate links, which means we get paid a commission when you purchase, but it the cost remains the same for you. 

Music: "Clydesdale Funk" by Cast of Characters, written by: Dustin Ransom.

The Episode

Rob  00:07

All right, welcome back everybody to The Slow Pitch. And today we’re going to talk a little bit about something that’s kind of odd. And what it comes down to is who is really in control. And this applies in more than one area of your life, by the way. Let’s get started.

V/O  00:23

You’re listening to The Slow Pitch Podcast, a podcast about selling less and closing more.

Rob  00:30

So the concept is simply this, the person who cares least about the relationship is the one who’s in control. Now, let me explain that because it may sound like well, what do you mean by in control. And this is based on a theory in psychology, that’s called the law of the rubberband. And the concept is simply this, it’s that growth stops when you lose the tension between where you are and where you could be. And the same thing applies in a sense in sales.

Rob  01:00

So think of it this way, I have a pain, I have a problem, I want to try to fix this problem. I’m talking to a salesperson, the salesperson is pushing me to buy them, that tension is being released, because they’re relieving my pain. They’re saying, I want you to buy this because it’s going to fix your problem. However, the reverse is actually happening in terms of the one that is pushing to make things happen, or the one that wants something to happen is the one that’s not so much in control, the person that’s actually in control in that situation, is the buyer, right?

Rob  01:34

You are now being told this is what you need. This is what you should be buying. And therefore you feel like I don’t know, maybe I don’t want it that right? That tension gets eliminated by when you push, the whole premise of our show is stop pushing, the premise of our show is you should stop, you should listen, you should learn, you should take it away from them. Because they’re more apt to say, no, no, I want that more. That’s the whole premise of all this concept is of being The Slow Pitch, right? Your job is to find a way to keep that tension there along the way, so that they feel like they want to buy. So in that situation.

Rob  02:14

The psychologist when they when they start to describe what’s happening, the psychologist talks about how the person in the relationship who is pushing the other party away is actually in more control. And that applies to sales that leaves the other person really wanting more and makes them want to reach out. And it makes them feel maybe a little insecure, or a little bit like just when you think of a relationship situation.

Rob  02:37

If your husband or your wife decides that they’re just not interested in talking to you, or they want to give you the cold shoulder. It’s frustrating, right? It’s makes you feel like I want to talk through this problem maybe right? Unless you’re past that point, maybe but if you’re not your your job is then to say, Okay, how do I fix this problem. And so then you are more or less not in control of the relationship, the only one that’s going to be in control now is the one that’s not engaging in the conversation, not wanting to do anything, they’re pretty much standing their ground, and not doing anything.

Rob  03:09

So the same thing applies when you got somebody that’s not making a decision in their sales process, right? They’re standing there in the middle of saying, Hey, I don’t feel one way or the other who’s in control, then if you’re the salesperson, you are not in control, the best part is this whole process is temporary. It ebbs and flows. If it’s temporary, you can move that person if they’re not temporary, then you need to force them to be a no, that’s what we talked about before by forcing them to be a no, you’re basically saying that you’re not engaging in this either. And you know that what their heads add? And this is going to be a no, no.

Rob  03:42

When you do that, what’s going to happen more than like, maybe 80% of the time, when you push them to be a no. Then what happens is, is that person then goes, Well hold on here, I have a couple more questions. Or they say, Well, you know, I’m just not ready right now. Or there’s some other pieces that may come up or other things they may add into their situation, why they’re not making a move forward movement.

Rob  04:02

When you learn that now the sales process is back on but you won’t get your sales process to go back on or back forward until you push them toward the know first. Once you do that, then they will start to come back around if they’re willing to if they’re not willing to you just saved yourself a whole bunch of time, right? You now know this person’s not going anywhere. It’s okay. Let’s move on. Let’s find somebody else to talk to.

Rob  04:26

It’s actually in the long term from a relationship standpoint, it actually can make the relationship stronger, but if it’s left unchecked, it can damage the relationship. Lucky part is for salespeople. A lot of the times your relationship is not temporary, but it’s short, right? You you go through the sales process, even if you have a longer sales cycle, your your engagement with that person or that amount of time you spend together is not dependent on your life, right? You’re Not You don’t have to worry about that and you’re in the relationship with them.

Rob  04:52

The only relationship you have is to try to help them get their problem solved and solve their pain. And so if if you think about it in terms of it’s not a lot long term problem, your job is to make it temporary and push them one way or the other. If they’re willing to say no, this is not a sale, that’s okay. If they’re willing to say, No, this, this should be something more than this, I need I need these answers, right? And we need to, I need to fix this problem. And here’s why. Now you need to start digging into those pain questions again.

Rob  05:18

So if you haven’t had a chance, I’m going to leave the link in the show notes. The law of the rubberband is an interesting concept. And it applies to sales. If you think about it in terms of where they are in the sales process, how strong of a position they are in as a buyer to say, yes, we’re moving forward, whether that’s subtle moves, or subtle statements, or a no, I don’t feel like this is going to we’re not a good fit.

Rob  05:41

You need to read that long term, even if they’re Yes, yes, yes, you have to recognize that’s a sign that they’re getting information from you. So when they’re saying yes, yes, yes, you need to pull it back a little bit to, you need to say, well, I don’t understand why this is a yes, we’re not quite to the point where normally someone wouldn’t feel comfortable buying yet. And you’re telling me it’s time to buy, what are you seeing?

Rob  06:03

Why why are you think what that’s going to do is going to force them to say, here’s the value I’m seeing, or here’s the problem it’s solving. And here’s, here’s the, the amount of money I’m saving, or whatever that might be, they’re going to tell you now, you know, it’s confirmed, yes, they’re moving forward. But if they can’t very well explain that to you, after you’ve called them on that. You say, hey, you’ve done all these yeses.

Rob  06:23

Basically, you’ve said, all these things are good, but I don’t feel like we’re ready yet. What? Why? Why are you there? If they can’t explain that, then you need to bring them back and say, I don’t know this sounds like you’re not quite there yet. We either we have two options here. Maybe Maybe you already know this is not a good fit. And they may say yeah, you know what? You’re right. Or they may say no, no, this is I still want to learn more.

Rob  06:48

And then you need to cautiously move forward, but you’re still pulling them back towards the No. So I hope that helps. Keep in mind the law of the rubber band, I would take a minute click the link, go look at it. It’s an interesting read and you’ll learn something and you can easily apply this to sales. So until next time, don’t forget slow down and you’ll close more.

V/O  07:06

Thank you for listening to The Slow Pitch. Do you have a question about sales? Call or text your question at (608) 708-SLOW. That’s (608) 708-7569 Or you can email them to Slow Down and Close More.

Rob  07:56

Thanks, as always, for listening today. If you’d like this podcast, please subscribe and leave us a review. We really appreciate it. Follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook at The Slow Pitch. We were mixed today as always by Johnny Polakis. And we were produced by High Gravity Studios. Music credits and other notes are in the show notes section on And we’ll be back with another episode soon.

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