Classic Hip-Hop Duel Breaks Out In Dallas

Boom 94.5 K-Soul KSOC Hot 93.3 KLIF-FM Dallas DFW Classic Hip-Hop Hip Hop R&BA pair of stations made the move to the booming Classic Hip-Hop niche in Dallas on Friday night.

First Cumulus CHR “Hot 93.3” KLIF-FM Haltom City launched what it is presenting as “Classic Hip-Hop For The Holidays” with a commercial-free weekend at 5:00pm. That led to Radio-One following suit later in the evening to flip Urban AC “94.5 K-Soul” KSOC Gainesville to become the third station to take on the Classic Hip-Hop “Boom” branding.

What’s going on here? At first glance both station would not appear to be candidates for a format change. KLIF-FM had just relaunched its CHR format at the beginning of October, while KSOC had trended up 2.1-2.6-2.9 in its last three PPM monthlies. Earlier this week during Radio-One’s quarterly earnings report, CEO Alfred Liggins stated that in its first week on air “Boom 92” KROI Houston jumped from a 0.9 share under the previous format to over a 4 share. That has led to the format rolling-out in Philadelphia and now Dallas.

There is a chicken and the egg scenario at play. Did 93.3 switch to the format in order to attempt to gain access to the niche first and did Radio-One hastily flip 94.5 afterwards to claim their burgeoning brand in the Dallas market? Or was the 94.5 flip in the works leading to 93.3 quickly attempting to shut it down? If KLIF-FM’s attempt is being marketed as being through just the holiday season what will be next for the signal in 2015? Does this open the door for CBS or another company to launch a CHR competitor to iHeartMedia’s “106.1 Kiss-FM” KHKS with 93.3 out of the format? Very rarely are so many questions raised by format changes.

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Lance Venta is the Owner and Publisher of RadioInsight.com and a consultant for RadioBB Networks specializing in integration of radio and the internet. Lance has two decades of experience tracking the audio industry and its use of digital platforms.

6 Comments


  1. Any guesses where Radio One may drop more Booms in the future? Could it be a candidate to replace the older demographics of a few of its FM gospel “Praise” stations?


    • They have to be thinking about it. In Houston, the Praise format on 92.1 (2006-11) pulled pretty good numbers for the signal, but the audience was too old.

      Sure anxious to see the numbers for the first month of Boom in Houston; the launch of which wasn’t part of the previous survey. The preliminary results are lighting a fire under Radio One, which may not want to be beaten to the punch elsewhere as they were in DFW. Sounds like the flip of KSOC had been planned, and the flip of KLIF-FM forced RO into an early launch.


      • I have to wonder if Cumulus isn’t doing this to generate awareness for Hot 93.3 figuring a potential flash-in-the-pan format will create some enthusiasm for its core audience when it flips back to CHR after the holidays. This might be a good and cheap way to get promotion when battling a strong station like KHKS, especially when nothing else has worked. Of course, it’s also possible they’re testing the waters or thinking they can make this format work for the long-term, but Cumulus isn’t known for trying new things.

        Watching the rest of the group and seeing if they launch any new classic hip-hop stations will be a good clue as to their long-term plans with 93.3.


  2. But can it be sold. The numbers may be good for KROI in Houston, but is it making money. It probably is now since they don’t have nearly the staff they had with the all news format.


  3. Or, Cumulus is playing a wait and see game where they are waiting to see if the ratings for Hot 93.3 end up working after the holiday season and could compete Boom. If ratings are good, keep the format and continue with it, otherwise flip back to CHR.

    I have feeling that a CBS station will take the opportunity to go CHR (probably KVIL or KJKK).


  4. HOT 93.3 has a huge social media following actually falling in love with the format!

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