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Man touts emu oil for its properties as 'miracle' cure

Mike Strain Published: April 30, 2000
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The tired, old building isn't a church, but the man inside talks about God and miracles and Super Blue.

He talks about taking away people's pain. Actually, he does more than just talk about it. He guarantees he'll do it in less than 10 minutes or there's no charge. The sign out front says so. Jack McClung says so.


McClung isn't a fast talker, but in a deep southern drawl he says a lot inside a small house that doubles as a pain clinic in northwest Oklahoma City.

He tells of being broke a little more than a year ago. He tells of a grand amount of money his product is pulling in.

Most of all, he tells about people who were hurting. People who had seen the doctors and tried all the drugs. People who were in serious pain before they tried Super Blue.

"Most people come back after using it and say it's a miracle," McClung says of the product he's selling. "What I've got is truly a miracle. I ask the Lord every day to send me people with pain, so that we can help 'em."

For the nonbelievers, McClung has a long list of testimonials. And he's quick to hand them out. He believes in his product.

Not everyone does. One Oklahoma City doctor who's familiar with Super Blue's ingredients says it's no miracle pain reliever. In fact, he says it will offer only temporary pain relief for some. For others, it might not amount to anything more than a moist spot on your skin where you rubbed it in.

Whether it works or not is up for debate, but this much is certain: What started as a little, one-man operation in a pair of old houses at 4216 and 4220 NW 23 has grown into a business that's making sales nationwide.

Getting started Jack McClung says he was broke a little more than a year ago. His barbecue restaurant business had failed, and, at 64, he was facing an uncertain future.

So he decided to try something different. Something he had been experimenting with since the mid-1990s, when he met a lady at the fair who told him something odd: Emu oil can ease your pain.

The emu is a large bird that's similar in appearance to an ostrich, and the thought of its possessing some pain-relieving power intrigued McClung. So he bought a couple of emus to start a herd of his own. He also bought some of the oil, because "I didn't want to kill my birds." He began experimenting to find the right kind of mixture of herbs and emu oil that would provide pain relief.

"The more I experimented the more excited I got," he said.

McClung said he "put out thousands of samples for about three years," and after his restaurant failed, he decided to try and make a living at selling the product he called Super Blue.

He started by opening a booth at the state fair in 1998. McClung said fairgoers were using the Super Blue, and it was working. Almost everyone who put the blue salve on their aches or pains was feeling better, but there was a problem.

"I couldn't sell it," said McClung, who eventually came to a conclusion - elderly people go to the fair to eat and young people go to play games. None went to buy a pain reliever.

His experience at the fair made only enough money to pay for the booth.

"I was broke," he said. "I almost quit."

He tried one more time. Fourteen months ago, he opened a pain clinic from one of the houses in northwest Oklahoma City. He called it Blue Stuff Pain Management Center, and he put the sign out front that's still there - the one that guarantees pain relief in 10 minutes or less or no charge.

"I had enough money to operate for two weeks," McClung said. "If I could get six customers per day, I could pay my bills and keep advertising."

He did a little better than the six customers.

"In my first month, I sold $3,000 worth," McClung said. "In my second month, I sold $6,000 worth. In my third month, I tripled. I sold $18,000 worth."

The business didn't slow. McClung says he's averaging more than $100,000 a month in sales these days, and he's been successful enough to open other pain clinics in Tulsa, Lawton and Altus.

Despite that success, McClung hasn't moved. He's still among the strip of houses that double as businesses on NW 23. He sells the Super Blue from an area that looks like a living room decorated with office furniture.

The bedrooms have been converted to offices, and the house has become crowded because his one-man Oklahoma City operation has grown to 12. Most of those employees are operators who answer phone calls from around the country, taking orders for Blue Stuff's products.

That's right. Through a slickly run marketing campaign from a little house in Oklahoma City, Blue Stuff is making sales all over the country. The marketing machine

Jack McClung has been on the radio. He has an Internet site (www.bluestuff.com). He advertises in newspapers in Oklahoma City; Tulsa; Denver; Fresno, Calif.; and Fort Worth, Texas. He says he will soon have a television infomercial.

In the beginning, his marketing effort started with a cheap way to spread the word and distribute the product.

"Every time we sell a bottle, we give five free samples," he said. "We tell them to give them to friends in pain, and only give one sample per friend."

As his sales grew, he managed to work his way into the talk-radio circuit. He's been on the air all over the country - from Pittsburgh to Los Angeles - touting his product and boosting sales.

Blue Stuff recently landed an advertising deal with Talk Radio Network, a company based in Central Point, Ore. McClung said Talk Radio agreed to swap advertising air time for a portion of the sales revenue the ads generate.

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