The Canadian pop singer's maiden American hit spent nine weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100. After fellow Canadian Justin Bieber revealed his affinity for the song to his then-approximately 20 million Twitter followers, the song's popularity surged, spurring impromptu versions of it by everyone from the all-male Harvard baseball team to (thanks to digital ingenuity) President Obama.
"Maybe" has sold 5.5 million downloads since its release, according to Nielsen SoundScan, and garnered an astounding 1.8 billion in cumulative audience on Billboard's Radio Songs chart, according to Nielsen BDS.
Billboard's annual Songs of the Summer running tally, presented by Pepsi, tracks the most popular songs based on cumulative performance on the weekly Hot 100 chart from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Jepsen is the first artist to claim top Song of the Summer honors with a first Hot 100 hit since Katy Perry won the mantle in 2008 with her first Hot 100 entry, "I Kissed a Girl." Since, Perry has become synonymous with summer anthems. Her "Waking Up in Vegas" ranked No. 10 for summer 2009, while "California Gurls," featuring Snoop Dogg, was No. 1 for summer 2010. Last year - while LMFAO's "Party Rock Anthem," featuring Lauren Bennett and GoonRock, earned the top Song of the Summer ribbon - Perry placed two titles on the season's final chart: "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" (No. 5) and "E.T.," featuring Kanye West (No. 9).
This year, Perry appears in the final Songs of the Summer chart for a fifth consecutive year, as her "Wide Awake" places at No. 4.
Prior to Jepsen this year and Perry in 2008, only two other women enjoyed top Song of the Summer accolades with debut Hot 100 entries (with Billboard's Song of the Summer archives dating to 1985): Christina Aguilera, with "Genie in a Bottle" (1999), and Mariah Carey, with "Vision of Love" (1990).
In between "Maybe" and "Awake," Maroon 5's "Payphone," featuring Wiz Khalifa, ranks as the No. 2 Song of the Summer, after spending six weeks peaking at No. 2 on the Hot 100, and Gotye's "Somebody That I Used to Know," featuring Kimbra, places at No. 3 after leading the Hot 100 for eight weeks and remaining in the top 10 through the end of August.
Ellie Goulding's "Lights" rounds out the season-ending Songs of the Summer chart's top five at No. 5. The song peaked at No. 2 on the Hot 100.
Rihanna's "Where Have You Been" places at No. 6 for summer 2012, followed by fun.'s "We Are Young," featuring Janelle Monae (No. 7); David Guetta's "Titanium," featuring Sia (No. 8); Nicki Minaj's "Starships" (No. 9); and, the current Hot 100 leader, Flo Rida's "Whistle" (No. 10).
Per those placements, Jepsen isn't the only new artist who spent her summer inhabiting the upper reaches of Billboard charts. Gotye, Goulding and fun. join her to make it four acts in the Songs of the Summer top 10 with debut Hot 100 hits.
Last year, just one act placed in the final Songs of the Summer chart with an introductory hit: Hot Chelle Rae, whose "Tonight Tonight" ranked at No. 10.
New artists hadn't boasted four titles in the Songs of the Summer top 10 since 2006, when first Hot 100 entries by Gnarls Barkley ("Crazy"), Cassie ("Me & U"), Yung Joc ("It's Goin' Down") and the Fray ("Over My Head (Cable Car)") ranked at Nos. 3, 4, 5 and 9, respectively.