Tim Horton's

Tim's Hockey Challenge: A mobile app reimagined with incentivized gamification.

Foster an easily accessible in-game experience Design within backend framework parameters Strengthen brand loyalty Enhance app engagement Increase utilization of Tim’s Rewards
Canadian Tire
UX/UI Designer, User Researcher
Wireframing, Rapid Prototyping, Interaction Design
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A blue sky idea to a fully launched in-game experience delivered under 2 weeks.

I was given to opportunity to design the first version of the Tim Horton’s NHL Hockey Challenge app. I lead product design with overall strategy and UI treatments on this project. After receiving a client brief on a general approach for the game, I created a high-fidelity prototype under 24 hours that would put the team in a good place towards the approval process, development and launch.

The game is inspired by betting apps. The user selects 3 players from a general list of who they believe will score in the upcoming games. If one player selected scores during seven consecutive NHL game days, they win FREE coffee for a week.

The goal for this campaign was to drive engagement and usage, actuate adoption of the digital transformation and the loyalty program, and for Tim Horton’s to remain competitive against their competition.

The Problem

How might we deliver an experience that is innate and allows users to onboard and play quickly? How do we retain users and reduce drop-off times? How might we create an experience that creates a sense of competition and sociability among others?

The Challenge

Timing. Delivering an engaging and playable concept that would go to market within 2-3 weeks was the biggest obstacle. The format had to look and feel like a fantasy sports betting app.


Transfer logic and familiarity from sports betting and news apps for displaying vital data. Consider the target market and average user base when designing the overall flow. Lightly push education for new users. Leverage incentives as much as possible. It was a balance of timing, simplifying the sport app experience for a common user, and packaging business goals.

Key Learnings

The two most significant elements of success for this project were communication and collective passion. When egos are dropped and passionate ideas are shared, teams can be vulnerable and considerate toward new strategies that grow into viable solutions. The pressure of business standards, timelines, and other implications are eased and that energy can be redirected to a higher collective level of success that reflects on the end users.

Enhance App Engagement

  • 360K unique Tim Horton’s app users
  • 80K users made daily Hockey Challenge picks
  • Average user played 4.5 times per week
  • App engagement increased by 92.5%

2021 Winner Best New Innovation

Social proof elevated the program to become an award-winning success. A real world example of how the product has had maximum social impact.

Strengthen Brand Loyalty

  • 2.8M organic social impressions
  • 86% positive sentiment
  • Top 90th percentile of all programs
  • 47% NET more likely to consider Tim’s

Long-term Design Strategy

After the app was launched and became more successful, my design language was implemented to future-proof the product as updates could be made with minimal effort. By leveraging existing cognitive patterns from the product, I added new components within an existing framework that was still familiar to the target users.