The global pandemic has led to the cancellation or postponement of lots of international sports events and it’s not over yet. In light of this, many cities and nations may not choose to consider the hosting of sports events as a priority.

But interestingly, bidding for major sports event seems to be bouncing back –  whether it be multi-sport events or single-sport world and continental championships – perhaps seeing a new opportunity to unite their populations and provide some ‘light at the end tunnel’.

We have seen that people around the world are looking to prepare their pitches to the international decision-makers, and if you are part of an organisation gearing up to bid for a major event, you must make sure to have the right mindset for such international pitching processes. This means – among many other things – to be aware of the following three fundamentals:

You’re bidding – not organising: While you do need to prepare an often very detailed technical file, you must stay in pitching mode where it is important that you are selling a vision and working on perceptions. Of course, you have to get the technical part right. But the detail of such only truly becomes the ‘main thing’ if you are successful.

It’s not about you – it’s about them: There will certainly be many nice things to say about your bid, and winning the right to host the event can of course do many good things to your city/country. But this is actually not that interesting to those outside of your region – often the ones who will be voting/selecting. As a bid, you must focus on their ideas and their dreams for how the event in your place can make a real difference – for them!

People vote for places – but also for people: We all know that the message is important, but so is the messenger – you. You have can many good ideas (and ideas focused on them) but if you don’t connect well with your audiences and build both logical and emotional bonds, it will be harder to make them follow you. Amid all the arguments you have, don’t forget yourself!

Keeping these three fundamentals in mind throughout the bidding campaign can help to make sure that you are approaching the process with the right mindset – and that you retain focus on being selected. For any bid, after all, that’s the thing that counts.