Yesterday, Marketing Pilgrim reported data from Altimeter Group that the average large company has 178 corporate-owned social media accounts.

Wait, what?

Who is setting up all of these accounts? How are there even Twitter handles left to go around anymore? Large companies with all the social media accounts, can you please explain yourselves?

So what’s going on here? Do large corporations really have a need for that many social media accounts? Let’s break down the reasons (some legitimate, some not) large companies are bombarding the social media world with their brands.

Why it Might Be Happening (And Actually Makes Sense)

People are claiming accounts in anticipation for future use. This makes sense if you’re planning for things like product launches or expansion to other cities and countries. In fact, that’s probably a common occurrence for larger companies, and is a social media best practice.

Why it Might Be Happening (But Makes No Sense)

Like Marketing Pilgrim points out, maybe these businesses are creating accounts for specific campaigns. If you’re like Geico and have such long-running campaigns as the Geico Gecko and the Geico Caveman (they’ve been going strong since 1999 and 2004, respectively), the separate social media accounts are certainly warranted.