There are benefits to using both a large hosting company and a small hosting company, and those benefits have changed in the last few years.
Around the year 2000 I worked for one of the largest hosting companies around, Hosting.com, as a remote technical support person and website sales. This company, when privately owned, was very good to its customers. Problems would be promptly resolved, we had only quality servers and talented and friendly staff, however the price was higher than most. They did, however, pay a commission for all referrals for every month they has services for, even after they changed ownership and I left. What I found they are great for is large scale business websites for companies with the resources to keep a higher end server running. This of course only applies to websites with the need for such a large server.
Some of the newer large hosting companies today, however, can have very impersonal support staff and use custom domain and site management tools that are below par to other software like cPanel. You have to do your research, some large companies are still using pay scales that are out of date today. As technology changes, so should the resources of your server package. Also, your website will usually be hosted half way across the world.
I used to dislike small hosting companies because I had found a long stream of inadequate or unreliable companies, a few even went bankrupt. Sometimes they stick you with Plesk, which I do not personally like. Plesk can cause errors to your website, I prefer to use cPanel. Plesk is mostly used because it is cheap. In the early days, small server companies used to just be a stack of computers in a cold room or closet.
I have, however, stayed with the same server company for the past two years! BlueFur.com has been the best server company I have been with since Hosting.com. They have been very progressive, and patient with my support requests. I have some pretty specific needs, and almost every one of them has been met and resolved. They have their own WebBlog, and are active on the local technical forum Tazzu.ca. They also have very cheap prices the occasional promotion. I personally have all my clients signed up on packages through BlueFur.com, and better yet they are located locally in Surrey, BC.
I would recommend BlueFur.com to anyone looking for quality hosting, and they will accommodate you in almost any way. Just ask them nicely for help, and you will be happily surprised.