Focusing your presentation on a serious problem that your audience has is essential—this is the way that you get their attention. Unless you are solving a problem for your audience, why should they listen to you? You're just another waste of time for them.
If you follow just this one idea—of focusing your presentation on solving a problem that your audience has—then you will see a substantive improvement in the success of your presentations.
The reason that drawing your audience's attention to a threatening problem works, in part, is that fear is a reliable motivator when the issue is a serious one and you are offering a helpful solution.
[...] The goal here is, instead of having them say, "Oh great, here comes Katya with another boring update," you want them to think, "Every time this person presents to us, we learn something useful.