Just stumbled across an article in Brand Channel on seven ways to build a brand by having a point of view you share with your customers. It's by Jean-Claude Saade and he calls them the "Seven doors of Connection."
The article is a bit basic, and I don't agree with all of his examples, but I find it useful because the seven categories provide an overview of ways to have not just a positioning, but a position, to use Richard's language. Sometimes I've found strategic discussions like this can get a bit woolly, stuck around finding "shared values," and ending up derailing into discussions that sound like the ones about the brand personality box on briefs, which are conversations we've been trying to get away from.
But as Saade lays out, there are many other ways to have a point of view. I've summarized his list here:
1. Shared Values (Peace, equality, liberty…)
2. Shared Roots (Religion, ethnicity, language, culture, citizenship, education, profession, geography…)
3. Shared Fights (Politics, environment, wildlife…)
4. Shared Interests and benefits (Wealth, power, information, notoriety…)
5. Shared Lifestyle (Fashion, housing, restaurants, vacations…)
6. Shared Hobbies (Sports, arts, music, travel…)
7. Shared Preferences (Food, drinks, cars, clothing…)
Personally, I'd look at the 6th category more as passions than hobbies, since connection with people requires a degree of enthusiasm about something which "hobby" doesn't quite convey (but which Fights and Roots do nicely). And I'm not clear how 5 and 7 are different. But I still think it's a useful start.