The Netherlands participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 2013 in Malmö, Sweden. The Dutch entry was selected through an internal selection, organised by the Dutch broadcaster TROS. Anouk represented the Netherlands with the song "Birds", which qualified from the first semi-final of the competition and placed 9th in the final, scoring 114 points.
In early September 2012, Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf published rumours that TROS was in talks to internally select Anouk for the Eurovision Song Contest 2013. Over the previous years Anouk has been frequently rumoured and suggested as a representative for the Netherlands in media, however, the singer indicated that she would only be interested if she was selected internally.
On 17 October 2012, Anouk announced her internal selection to represent The Netherlands through a video message posted on her Facebook account.
On 22 February 2013, TROS announced that Anouk would perform the song "Birds" in Malmö. The song was presented during a press conference in Hilversum on 11 March 2013.
Anouk at the first semi-final dress rehearsal in Malmö.
The Netherlands was allocated to compete in the first semi-final on 14 May for a place in the final on 18 May. In the first semifinal, the producers of the show decided that the Netherlands would perform 8th, following Ukraine and preceding Montenegro. On stage, Anouk had three backing singers: Shirma Rouse, Ricardo Burgrust and Yerry Rellum.
The Netherlands qualified from the first semi-final, placing 6th and scoring 75 points. Prior to their qualification, the last time the Netherlands qualified to the final was nine years ago in 2004. At the first semi-final winners' press conference, the Netherlands was allocated to perform in the first half of the final. In the final, the producers of the show decided that the Netherlands would perform 13th, following Armenia and preceding Romania. The Netherlands placed 9th in the final, scoring 114 points.
The national jury that provided 50% of the Dutch vote in the first semi-final consisted of: Nancy Coolen (singer and television presenter), Carlo Boszhard (television presenter and musical actor), Kim-Lian van der Meij (musical actress, television presenter and singer-songwriter), Eric van Tijn (music producer) and Cornald Maas (television presenter). In accordance with the rules of the 2013 Contest, Eric van Tijn and Cornald Mass were both replaced in the final by Jeroen Nieuwenhuize (DJ) and André de Graaf (music publisher) after their names were released to the public following the first semi-final, but prior to the final. Nancy Coolen, Carlo Boszhard and Kim-Lian van der Meij remained on the jury for the final. The Dutch spokesperson in the grand final was Cornald Maas.